Thoughts after Samuel Palmer (1805-1881)

By Bud “Weasel” Rice

Everywhere curious, articulate,
perfect and inimitable … nature
does … leave a space for the soul to climb [yet]
above her steepest summits. As, in her
own dominion, she swells from herring to
leviathan, from the shelly hodmandod
to th’ elephant, to the divine and true,
to th’ radiant, heavenly eye of God.
I can’t but think this world a setting of
the table right before the feast, through which
her features dimly smile in peace and love,
creation but an antepast and dish,
a prologue to the dream about to come
of grand eternity’s proscenium.



By Wilude Scabere

Let me not to the marriage of two souls,
a man and woman tied eternally,
as time around them rages in its throes,
do aught but gaze in awe most earnestly
upon their physical commitment; for,
they’ve linked themselves together for all time,
and left childhood behind for something more,
allegiance to the hour, and not the mind.
O, that is harder than most anything
in life, devotion to a husband or
a wife; because so many things do fling
impediments ‘gainst that embattled door.
All marriage has within its arsenal
are gentleness and love to fight time’s squalls.


In Xanadu

By Si Ulec Badewre

In Xanadu, did distant relative of Kubla Khan
step to the threshold of the age that he had stumbled on.
He crossed the vast Kazakhistan, outcast Mongolian,
and looked about that stage so strange—that steppe—in golden dawn.
He tried to make sense of his time, to reach the distant sky,
to ride across that gorgeous emptiness beyond his eye.
He dreamed of Russia, Asia too, from China to Europe,
his only hope a hunger for the vast plains to erupt.
He cried out in a language that would modify the World,
and it poured out through all the souls in which it had been hurled.


This View From Westminster Bridge

By Basil Drew Eseu

Earth does have fairer things than this view from Westminster Bridge,
where Big Ben sits with Beth upon dull, brown Thames River’s edge,
where one can see the big, white circle’s O, the London Eye,
as it lifts people from the ground and loops them through the sky.
Around are cluttered buildings, bridges, boats and bits of trees,
all brilliant in the sun, though dismal in the rainy breeze.
If ever one would call it touching, then one would be touched;
to capture its significance requires Double Dutch;
and having only English in a very English place,
I best be still and seem asleep, and leave without a trace.


The Man Working Hard Not to Work

By Des Wercebauli

I saw him sitting on the job, his black boots spread out wide.
It looked like he was taking everything in life in stride.
His jaw was slack, his mouth ajar, but he was not alseep;
in fact it seemed as if he’d fallen in to something deep.
It looked like he was working hard to not work hard at all.
I could not help but gaze in awe at one so jarred, asprawl.
How could he sit there doing hardly anything but that,
and yet be next to falling over, down, out-stretched and flat?
I watched him there not working on my car parked in the shop,
until the scales from my eyes* began to droop and drop.

*”scales from my eyes began to droop and drop” is an allusion to Acts 9:18 by Luke: “Immediately something like scales fell from Saul’s eyes, and he could see again.”

The Canvas of Reality

By Red Was Iceblue

It was a world that still is here, but vanished too. It’s gone.
It is the rewind of a life that one was once up on.
The highways one was riding down, the alleys that one walked,
black coat, dark tee shirt, and dark pants, the steps one took, one stalked.
What was he doing there? Where was he going? Who was he?
The city lights at night—kaleidoscope cacophony.
What did it mean—the traffic, sirens, brakes, the many souls?
Why were they thus in this strange pattern? Who were all these folks?
It was a blur of blue and red, of yellow, green and white,
vibrating atoms in a rush and crush of signs and light.


Bruce Dale Wise is a poet living in Washington State. He often writes under anagrammatic pseudonyms.

Featured Image: “A Dream in the Appenine” by Samuel Palmer, 1864.

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One Response

  1. Reid McGrath

    Attention! Attention! Ladies and gentlemen! When Bruce Dale Wise hits them he really hits them! At once sophisticated and silly, erudite and ludic, creatively original and traditionally classical… an architectonic innovator of poetic numbers and a practitioner of the fantastic forms of his forebears… living in the spheres of the celestial as well as in the crassness of the commonplace… extolling both the universal and the local a la Dante, Shakespeare, and Eliot… as prolific and as uncelebrated in his time as an Emily Dickinson… cataloging both Kings and Car Mechanics… and, when he is on his game (I prefer the tennos to the bild although some of the bilds are truly extraordinary) and even, sometimes—due to the sheer volume of his output—when he is not (hitting a double, on occasion, being just as effective as hitting a home-run), is there, good people, a better contemporary poet on the planet?


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