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Dec 28th
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Poetry Corner

AE_POETRY1Editor’s note: In this week’s Poetry Corner, we feature poet Ron Slate’s first book of poems, “The Incentive of the Maggot,” (Houghton Mifflin 2005), which was nominated for the National Book Critics Circle poetry prize. His second book from Houghton, “The Great Wave,” was published this year. Slate maintains a literary book review, "On the Seawall," at  ronslate.com. He lives in Milton, Mass.

Arcadia

A horn blaring and the gut-smash of metal –

I heard the crash and swiveled
on my stool in the Arcadia.

Two drivers met in the street,
chastened and faultless.

Pieces of chrome and glass --

so much care taken not to step
in the spreading puddle of antifreeze.

As children we played in the parking lot
of the hospital, hearing the siren
long before an ambulance arrived.

A policeman said “you kids go home.”

As teens we worked as orderlies,
suddenly we could be trusted to look,
but I soon preferred to avert my eyes.

Notorious intersection,
too costly to redesign.

The insipid righteousness of pedestrians.

Cited, a shaken man,
protesting his innocence --

he took the stool beside me, awaiting the tow,

AE_POETRY2beneath the bleached print of the Parthenon
and a giant gyro hovering above it
poised to punish or nourish Athens.

You’re my witness, he said,
you saw what happened.

But I didn’t see anything,
I heard the sound of what occurred,
and then I turned to look.

 

Lion of God

Some remember me from those days,
not by that name, given to me,
but by the breach between name and boy.

At ten I pronounced the unspeakable
name of God, my teacher rose from his chair,
dragged me by the scruff, then shook me

in his teeth. Speaking the word to make
a pleasing sound, I neglected
to consider the significance,


committing a grave offense.
Thus I was transformed by terror,
my classmates looking on,


and in the space between name and child
arose fear, respect, contempt,
wonder, loss of faith, awe of the eternal.


I took my seat and read on, wary now
of meaning but loving the lilt, relying now on rhythm
so that time may never be interrupted again.

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Dancing In the Rain

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Our Gifts - Fiery Sacrificial Lights to One Another

Wednesday is Christmas Eve, Hanukkah ends and the Moon is in Aquarius, calling for the new world to take shape at midnight. Thursday morning, the sun, at the Tropic of Capricorn, begins moving northward. The desire currents are stilled. A great benediction of spiritual force (Capricorn’s Rays 1, 3, 7) streams into Earth. Temple bells ring out. The heavens bend low; the Earth is lifted up to the Light. Angels and Archangels chant, “On Earth, peace, goodwill to all.” As these forces stream into the Earth they assume long swirling lines of light, in the likeness of the Madonna and Child. The holy child is born. Let our hearts be “impressed” with and hold this picture, especially because Christmas may be difficult this year. Christmas Day is void of course moon (v/c moon), which means we may feel somewhat disconnected from one another. It’s difficult to connect in a v/c moon. Try anyway. Mercury joins Pluto in Capricorn. Uh oh … we don’t bring up the past containing any dark and difficult issues. We are to attempt new ways of communicating—expressing aspirations and love for one another, replacing wounding, sadness, lostness, and hurts of the past. Play soothing music, pray together, have the intention for peace, harmony and goodwill. Don’t be surprised if things feel out of control and/or arguments arise. We remember, before a new harmony emerges, chaos and crisis come first to clear the air. We are to be the harmonizers. Christmas evening is more harmonious, less difficult, more of what Christmas should be— radiations of love, sharing, kindness, compassion and care. Sunday, Feast Day of the Holy Family, is surprising. Wednesday is New Year’s Eve, the last day of 2014. Taurus moon, a stabilizing energy, ushers in the New Year. Happy New Year, everyone! Peace to everyone. Let us realize we are gifts radiating diamond light to one another. Living sacrificial flames!

 

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