To a Poem is a Bott the Stranger

A few thoughts on this.

I’m not sure if I’m inspired by the overall success of some of the language or if I’m terrified by it. I am leaning towards inspiration, but I also tend to romanticize things.

That said, some lines really stand out:

“the wind is only for me.”
“there’s part of the world between the darkness”
“the father of the light is not a fist of the bones.

The line about the wind is almost identical to something I read yesterday, which I think was by Antler. I’ll share it here when I can find it again.

The darkness line is lovely, and reminds me of “Break on Through,” by The Doors.

“The father of the light is not a fist of the bone,” is to my ear very similar to the idea behind this line of Christian scripture: “anger does not produce the righteousness of God.” That’s James 1:20. James 1:17 says “every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.”

Data for Breakfast

Code is Poetry. This is part of the WordPress philosophy. As a coder and a poet, I have always loved this phrase. I decided to turn this phrase around and ask, Can I make poetry with code? Could I make a bot that could write original poetry? I created an experiment to find out.

First off, I knew that if my bot was to learn to write poetry, it first had to read poetry. In 2017, authors used WordPress to publish over half a million posts tagged as poetry. I reached out to some prolific poets sharing their work with WordPress and asked if they’d be willing to collaborate with me on a fun experiment: would they allow my bot to read their work so that it could learn about poetic form and structure, so that it might learn to write its own poetry? Special thanks to these intrepid…

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Pushing Through Fences

Twice in two days I’ve encountered poetry with the image of livestock pushing through fences.

The first was Robert Okaji’s piece I linked to yesterday.

The second, which I came across today, is from Valerie Worth:

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Years ago, we went to an adoption event at a local pet store. I had never had a dog, which every child should.  Childishly, I thought we’d bring home one of the black lab pups, industrious, oblivious, silly. But a year-old Aussie shepherd, brown and creamy and with people-eyes, pushed through the fencing of his black steel crate and asked to join our family.

I wrote yesterday about the healing power of dogs. He was the best at that.

For World Poetry Day: To You Biographers of Caesar

To You Biographers of Caesar

To you biographers of Caesar,
I am that murdered general,
a Roman nose engraved on silver coin;
an alabaster column in perfect Roman order,
a sword, a plow, a prefect,
a century of soldiers—
a bumper crop in Tunis or in Spain.

To you biographers of Peter,
I am that Prince Apostle,
a Hebrew man enshrined beside the Po;
a traitor and evangelist fell prey to Roman order,
a sword, an ear, a net for men,
a century of soldiers—
an empty cross along the Apis train.

To you biographers of Arthur,
I am that coming high-king,
a Celtic myth in Celtic pride entwined;
a pauper and a prince, once, before the Roman order,
a sword, a stone, a chalice,
a fief of noble soldiers—
the Cup of Christ long kept by England’s swain.

To you historians of Athens,
I am that naval power,
the wisdom of my people long beheld;
Master over Sparta before the Roman order,
a sword, a fleet, the polis,
a city-state of scholars—
the light of pagan Europe in my blade.

You genealogists of Adam,
I am the father sinner,
God’s firstborn from the dirt of Eden’s shade;
a farmer and a workman, the sewer of disorder,
a sword, a tree, the rocky earth,
left to my warring children—
their history still in my image made.