Monday, January 30, 2012

Little Big Men


image borrowed from bing

Little Big Men

In the logging town of Kapowsin,
down at the Chalet Tavern every
Thursday night, under forgotten,
dried out sprigs of mistletoe, after
the drunken crowd becomes manic,
fist fights inevitably break out,
the callow punks with beer sweat
glistening on their pink foreheads,
create their weekly carom event--

as heavy bodies slam into and off of
rough-hewn log walls, usually breaking
at least one electric Budweiser sign;
the local brutes valiantly endeavoring
to aver themselves over the more demure
clientele--just before something quite
wondrous happens, for there is this
posse of pygmies who like to drink
there on that night,

who are actually quite spry for little guys,
and the forty of them love to gang up
on the bellicose thugs, using hardwood
police batons, beating them senseless,
and then sitting on them while finishing
their frothy pitchers of draft,

waiting patiently for the cops to be called,
the several aide cars to line up outside
with their many colored light bands pulsating,
watching the bruised behemoths being
carried out on stretchers--calling out
to them with guttural African epithets!

“Can’t wait for next Thursday,” one of the
short warriors said,”I’ve got a dozen
cousins coming for a visit.”


Glenn Buttkus

January 2012

Listed as #2 over at Shawna's Monday Melting, Week 4

Would you like to hear the author read this poem to you?

Sequences and Ratios


image borrowed from bing

Sequences and Ratios


happy hands man
dancing while he runs
the mall between Lincoln
and etched wall
names of soldiers fallen

oblivious to the rest of us
ear buds in, at ease in
his spandex skin
under the spotlight of the sun

almost blinding on
a cold January morn

all the flowers turn
their heads in the passing

then once more trace fingers
along loved ones
& others


Brian Miller

Posted over on his site Way Station One
Listed as #56 over on Magpie Tales 102

Daydreamscape

painting by wassily kandinsky

Daydreamscape

the dog star has turned Labrador dark,
the boomerang does not return,
McDonald’s arches turn ketchup-red,

epees clank seriously in mock combat,
three wayward stars fell in a perfect parallel,
tropical toucans stab mangos with stiletto beaks,

the Stone’s massive tongue licks sticky fingers,
a black eel triumphed in the annual worm race,
painted hatchets are more art noir than war club,

coronets without mutes should not wail,
the flying wing has night flights near China Lake,
a thick asteroid belt encircles most moons,

yellow daisies with black tongues are macabre,
moss agates capture primal tableaus,
terrorist missiles hit the great pyramid at dawn,

the silver surfer leaves golden contrails between planets,
shredded Israeli flag waved about by stickmen
who still enjoy a thick pat of creamery butter
on their strawberries.

Glenn Buttkus

January 2012

Listed as #68 over on Magpie Tales 102

Would you like to hear the author read this poem to you?

It's Rather Simple, This


image borrowed from bing

it's rather simple, this

it’s rather simple, this
conjuring up hope
trick, although there
are some instances
when it fails –
certainly
enough times
to have kept
you wide awake
last night
.

Yi Ching Lin

Posted over on her site Yi's Bits

The Business Of


image borrowed from bing

the business of

the business of
living is a supple
management of
mirages – from sun
up till sun down,
hope is the weight
in your boots,
lifting, replacing
.

Yi Ching Lin

Posted over on her site Yi's Bits

In the Melodic Equivalent Of


image borrowed from bing

in the melodic equivalent of

in the melodic equivalent of
the mind’s eye, the inner
ear holds patterns of
vibrations that only the
heart understands –
the sound of stalks
brushing against the mid-
morning sky, the soft
padding of bare feet
across cold tiles,
your deep resounding
voice across the
telephone wires
.

Yi Ching Lin

Posted over on her site Yi's Bits

The Color of Music


painting by wassily kadinsky

“The Color of Music”

my feathers are jazz,
spinning light

as hair; I’m a
fair-weather
parrot,
rent

into cubicle pieces

working hard
at playing it smooth

on the sax

sucking black reeds
with a swollen slack
tongue;

my blind eye the sun,
I see it all—

it’s mardi gras march
and I’m leading the parade,
my rainbow rhythms
conducted

on a black-and-white stage

as
confetti
notes
fall,
streaking
the
naked

streets

with the color of music



Shawna McAllister

Posted over on her site Rosemary Mint
Listed as #47 over on Magpie Tales 102

Sunday, January 29, 2012

A Very Modern Adam


image borrowed from bing

A Very Modern Adam


Elevenses. Today as every day he takes
the apple from his briefcase, places it
upon his desk and waits
for it to levitate.
It never does,
but still he knows it might. One day
it could surprise the world.

He'll sit transfixed before it for a while
and peering in will see a wilderness
of spinning shadow forms, motes, specks of no-life,
bits left over from the Big Bang - if
there ever was one - clouding empty space.

And what of time? That, too, is clouded -
and so he feels affinity
with all of nature's works
and wonders of the apple if its spinning wonders
took the forms they did because
those were their own predestined shapes:
the juices, for example, seeds and textured flesh.
Had each of these its own worn ruts to run
laid down in days - millennia - gone by
by trees with certain tales to tell,
which trees, life span by life span deepening
the grooves, carved out what we call memory?

And might the wooden desk
not say the same?
Or through the window glass
the summer rain?
Sometimes he thinks himself into the apple's flesh.
It's like he's landed somewhere out in space -
but ruts don't seem to work out there.

And so he peers again through apple skin,
seeing the apple's heart, its cloud of whirling pin heads,
and as a face in any cloud might form,
the face of Newton forms in this.
With Newton comes a clockwork mechanism
erasing for a moment thoughts of ruts.

The apple levitates at last - he thinks - perhaps
in some magnetic field.
And so his mindset shifts again and opens to
computer metaphors: the apple is the end result
of programs memorised to clone themselves
through an eternity of ruts.

But none of these will do. The apple eats
the metaphors. He sees them fall
like scales from eyes grown dim. The old
dichotomies dissolve. What if
there is no matter, all is energy? In school
we learned about converting one
to other. Science is too pure a thing
to leave to scientists.


Dave King

Posted over on his site Pics & Poems
Listed as #38 over at dVerse Poets-Undercurrents

Chilling Out


painting by wassily kandinsky

Chilling Out



This frozen field, my mind, plays tricks on me
it goes from chilled to hot in seconds flat
shocks thoughts electrifying to my feet
and on the earth a flame of anguish sparks.

All because of silly things, a misplaced shoe
or perhaps forgotten homework, dirty tracks
across the rug, those crazy dogs
(oh, I love them so).

Then all at once I feel serenity
it startles like an unexpected touch
a cloak of permeable karma flows through me
like magic all the heat is gone
I’m chilled again, born into God’s realm of joy.

laurie kolp

Posted over on her site Conversation With Laurie
Listed as #5 over on Magpie Tales 102

Listen


image borrowed from bing

listen


did you hear



the light created

before the sunrise



intake of breath

before the bird song



blink of the eye

before the tear fell



flush of the skin

before the kiss



did you hear



listen



Mark Windham

Posted over on his site Awakened Words
Listed as #51 over at dVerse Poets--Undercurrents

This Heart


painting by wassily kandinsky

This Heart

this heart’s now yours
this damaged heart
this brittle fractured aching heart
broken by you, every part

I’ve no use for this ruined heart
plucked here from my chest
I seek a new and vital heart
one that’s far less stressed

a fresh heart that’s unbreakable
a heart able to forgive
unmarred unscarred yet tender
beating with the joy to live
• • •
rob kistner © 2012

Posted over on his site Image and Verse
Listed as #34 over on Magpie Tales 102

Give Me An Apple


Red Spot II, 1921, Wassily Kandinsky

Give me an apple



every day and I'm happy.
It's relatively simple

to satisfy my taste.
Eve gave one to Adam,

but I like the notion
of you giving one to me,

a special purpose vehicle,
a universal gravitation,

a certain law of motion
Newton would approve of,

even Lilith would give
her right arm to enjoy.



tess kinkaid

January 2012

Posted over on her site Life at Willow Manor
Listed as #8 over on Magpie Tales 102

Center Stage


image borrowed from bing

Center Stage


Prepped and primped
so much powder
weighing eyelashes
but you never let 'em see you sweat.

A cold beer sweats,
already the crowd is alive
a stranger calls my name
I pretend not to hear it.

The boys think its great
as they hide behind guitars,
double bass drums
and sound boards

ready to bed
the first blonde, the first redhead
the first woman drunk enough
to forget she did not arrive alone

They're laughing
all ready three sheets to the wind
counting heads and counting dollars
running the bar into the ground

before the first set
where they will be the rock stars
and I will be...
a chick trying to sing Zeppelin

Rock on!


Natasha Head

aka: Tashtoo

Posted over on her site Tashtoo Parlour
Listed as #24 over on dVerse Poets-Undercurrents

Love Legions


image borrowed in bing

Love Legions

Movies are always my passion,
even when women’s charms are not;
sitting in dark rooms my fashion,
my gaze on silver screens bear-caught--
capturing my soul in mid-trot
as Richard Burton’s deep voice sings
Shakespeare, the meaning so distraught,
lost in Welch accent’s silver wings.

I love you, Shane, said Joey so alone.
I love you too much not to say
a man needs madness, not dog bones,
in order to cut the rope some day
and be free, floating on blue bays.
I love you, Spartacus, father
I will never know, as the rays
of sunshine died without bother.

I love you, Antoninus, like
the son I will never ever meet,
driving the dagger deep as spike,
knowing soon they would pierce his feet,
cruxified by hundreds along streets,
with cobblestone faces and bloody tears,
little did he know he would meet
his son as souls fled in mirrors.

Dalton Trumbo without retreat
from blacklisting, got Kirk’s fine ears
burning with gratitude’s pure heat,
reinstating his name sans fear.

Glenn Buttkus

January 2012

This is my attempt to construct a French Ballade.
Would you like to hear the author to read this poem to you?

Train Time


image borrowed from hedgewitch


Train Time




I’ve made my accommodations,
set my watch to the new time zone
for this journey rolled on the tumbling wheels
of an iron horse rocking in darkness
as the wind blows the flying flag whistle.

The last ticket crackles in my pocket
a faint fire on my skin as I
try to forget the dead girl I left
tied to the carousel, round and round;
I’ve made my accommodations.

Out the window the night’s a film
come sifting down in haze
through clouds' warm rich milk
sieving back secrets like kept curd;
only skimmed wastelight falls in the new time zone

where we chase the hours through the lengthening night
with a cawing louder than a lunatic crow’s
up and up the spiral way through rockbound trees
before the snow, the long descent to the sea
as the journey unrolls on tumbling wheels

unwinding a silkscreen I barely can see:
bright and flashing dawns, white cabins
malachite forests, yellow-eyed owls
beginnings and red tulips overtaken, outrun
by the night horse rocking in darkness.

The sum of what I want is not where I must go
but all the places this train will never stop,
while the sleepless wheels whisper: no drugs no drink
no magic trick can ever take
the flying whistle back from the wind.


Joy Ann Jones

aka: Hedgewitch

Posted over on her site Verse Escape
Listed as #21 over on dVerse Poets-Undercurrents

Getting Better With Time


image borrowed from bing

Getting Better with Time


She wanted to go shopping
catch the special sale, said we could
stuff a bag with items for only ten bucks
but it’s so small, the sack they handed
out when we walked in

I’m watching her
amidst the Black Friday-like mob
frantically searching the rows and rows
of clothes, she’s ditched the bag
I’m so sure, she’d said
with a flip of her hair
so long and beautiful, my little girl
born with a full head of hair

now a teenager

she proved herself hormonal
yesterday, a rush before school
dressing up for UIL
"who cares about the solo"
what matters is how she looks
on the free day without a uniform
at last
her hair must be curled just so
with ringlets on the side
it looks like shit, should’ve flattened it
a huff and a puff out the door
and I’m trying to remember;
I was just like that

The crowd’s going crazy with yellow bags
I’m feeling claustrophobic,
I find an open spot
by the shoes, under the speaker
where Leona Lewis sings
It’ll All Get Better with Time
and I’m taken back three years ago…

Mary’s suicide so unexpected
the rug being pulled out from under my feet,
the hurt, the endless questions
sucked into an empty vacuum, I was
but this song always gave me hope, still does
almost like a sign from heaven every time
I heard it on the radio,
times I needed to hear those words

Mary’s sending me a message- enjoy your daughter
she doesn’t get that special time with hers
I take off to find my girl by the slinky tees
it has gotten better with time

laurie kolp

Posted over on her site Bird's Eye Gemini
Listed as #14 over on dVerse Poets-Undercurrents

Staked Bamboo Pit


image borrowed from bing

Staked Bamboo Pit



Fell

right

in

evidently.

nothing

done

so

Far.

remains

insouciant.

eventually

notices

distinct

stabbing

From

rear.

i’ve

entrapped

no

dumb

swine.

Friends

remain

intimate

even

now,

death

squealing.


Richard King Perkins II

**The poem gets its feel from the fact that all the words in the poem stem from the word
F
r
i
e
n
d
s repeated four times.

Posted over on his site Word Fresco
Listed as #16 over on dVerse Poets-Undercurrents

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Divorce a Possibility in Brooklyn, NYC


image borrowed from bing

Divorce a Possibility in Brooklyn, NYC


She wipes the counters for weeks
with an increasingly moldy
sponge. Paper goods
have always been his job, the
disposables,
so for a while when she shops,
she just forgets, grocery store a blur
anyway, baby tied to her chest
like an amulet
against the leering heights
of canned corn, the precarious stacks
of tomato, all those old Italian ladies
in black coats (no matter the season),
the traffic
of criss-crossed carts.

Till at last, gridlocked in
an aisle she’d intended to sidestep,
she’s faced
by the cellophane muscles
of a man who promises
to pick up everything. She starts
to reach out to him–his
brand, his wrapper–but feels
suddenly certain
that if she even
touches those paper towels, it will be the end
of the life she has planned.

She looks down
into her cart; its dull
metal grid reminds her now
of a cage, a poor
cage made of wire and gap,
perfect for some animal
that’s neither strong
nor clever.


Karin Gustafson

aka: ManicDDaily

Posted over on her site ManicDDaily
Listed as #5 over on dVerse Poets-Undercurrents

Bread Sticks & Crumbs


image borrowed from bing

Bread Sticks & Crumbs



Eleven years old and texting;
her two BFFs, on-call, waiting
for her ‘go time’ message as

she sits in a restaurant,
across from her parents (Ugh!)
and next to her
little sister (UGH, UGH!)

The four of us talk
over bread sticks, and laugh
until soda spurts out of our noses.

There’s not one mention of
the BFFs on standby.

Tonight, the moon shone
upon the bread-crumbed path
I leave for her each day, and

as we drive home, one hour past
the estimated ‘go time,’ I say,
“Thank you. I’m proud of you.”

In the SUV’s back, back seat,
she smiles sheepishly and
mumbles something about

‘having fun.’ (Weeee!)
In the front seat, a mother’s breath
catches; her heart melts, and I

discreetly toss more
bread crumbs out the window,
all the way home.


Sheila Moore

Posted over on her site She's Writing
Listed as #2 over on dVerse Poets-Undercurrents

Blue Balls & Wrist Watches


image borrowed from rolex

blue balls & wrist watches


Live for greatness, the ad for Rolex
on the back of Travel & Leisure

whispers

soft fingers along my ear & her
fierce eyes thumb through my book
scent marking each page, dress cut
below glossy breasts, just a hint

and what? what?
she wants to sell me

a time piece, no

because who needs a mortgage
just to tell time, never be late but
its moments---she pedals,

a bike down a dirt lane, tires on pebbles
grind and skritch, green grass lined, the sun
beams bubble, her short floral dress, wisp
of wind & her legs tan as fried chicken
with promises of secret ingredients, sticky
finger lickin', running them slow along
the length with her tongue

greatness

she teases, taps the crystal face as hands count
d
o
w
n until she's gone,
a slow dancing vapor, gasping
flower unfurled damp & heady,
entwined round
a pole, upside down and sliding,
of what
could have been if---

only i wore a watch, but my wrist is empty
of such constraints, acidic coffee krinkles
the corner of my eyes as i take the last sip,
savoring its bite, then rise from the bench,
cross the tile floor, trash the cup & head
for the door

leaving greatness

by where i sat, to shine
for someone
else.


Brian Miller

Posted over on his site Way Station One

Friday, January 27, 2012

Save the Kalakala, Mr. President


image borrowed from Bing

Kalakala Alliance Foundation
Steve Rodrigues, President
PO Box 1475
Tacoma, WA. 98402
Tel (206)234-2045
Email:olympicforum2000@usa.net
www.kalakala.org

July 20, 2010

Honorable Mr. President Obama,
White House
Washington D.C., USA

Dear Honorable President of the United States of America,

I am Steve Rodrigues and President of the Kalakala Alliance Foundation (KAF). KAF is registered to do business in the State of Washington as a legal federal 501 (C) 3 Non-Profit Organization. Since November 2003 I had to believe that it has become my American duty to learn how to seek the freedoms and liberties that could help save the MV Kalakala. And, in doing so, I had to have faith and hope that, “all things are possible to them that believe”. Seven years ago, I first learned of and became owner of the MV Kalakala. It has taken 7 years to find out all about her significances related to both our state and nation’s transportation history. And, I have already shared such information with the State of Washington public officials without any responses. Now, we have a need to share with you and the Secretary of the Interior all her nationally significant evidences, so that, she can be considered as one of our national landmarks. And, you and the Secretary must know, that all our past efforts have failed within the local, statewide, and recently within Washington D.C. Today, you can help by considering, in a timely manner, the use of your Presidential powers to authorize the MV Kalakala and a site to be protected under the use of the Antiquity Act 1906.

Today, after failing in the State, we had to leave, gather extensive background knowledge, and other historical records related to the Kalakala and other American registered national landmarks. January 27, 2010 I started such efforts while on the “Kalakala’s walk of HOPE” across America. We now have witnessed and been able to see why the Antiquity Act 1906 was originally created. And, it is a fact that over 400 years ago, April 26, 1607, that our first English Colonists landed on the soils known today as Ft. Henry located at Virginia Beach, Virginia. Our first settlements of Jamestown and Williamsburg were established shortly thereafter. Since the early 1600’s other Peabody Family, English colonists, would also come to and land in American soil to become free men within the New England States. That after the revolutionary war with the British by 1776 our colonies became a free nation. And, that our nation’s forefathers created the Bill of Rights that is now our nations Constitution. And, over the centuries our nation has had to create new laws to protect the beauty of our nation and other treasured landmarks before they become destroyed. And, it is a fact that by 1906, our nation created Antiquity Act 1906 to prevent such total loss of our nation’s most significant antiquities.

Since 1895, over 115 years ago, our State of Washington has suffered many losses of such potential antiquities. And today, we must ask you to help us prevent such antiquities (water transportation) from being lost forever. The Kalakala is the last of our state’s only remaining heritage and culture related to our past original Black Ball Line. After, only 59 years of state control, we are about to lose 100 years of our original ferry system heritages that were inherited by the State of Washington June 1, 1951.
It is with a sincere heart, and a shame that I must resort to asking you, the President of the United States of America, to use our nation’s constitutional law known as the Antiquity Act 1906 to protect them. Under such a law, the Kalakala can become situated upon a tract held in private ownership, the tract, or so much thereof as may be necessary for the proper care and management of the Kalakala, may be relinquished to the Government, and the Secretary of Interior is to authorize and to accept the relinquishment of such tract in behalf of the Government of the United States. And, to please consider the Kalakala to become registered with a level of national significance to establish her as a national landmark structure.

I am asking you, Honorable Mr. President, President of HOPE, for a future meeting to present and discuss the 1935 MV Kalakala and the Antiquities Act of 1906-16-USC 431-433.
It states in part:
Section 2.
“ That the President of the United States is hereby authorized, in his discretion, to declare by public proclamation historic landmarks, historic and prehistoric structures, and other objects of historic or scientific interest that are situated upon the lands owned or controlled by the Government of the United States to be national monuments, and may reserve as a part thereof parcels of land, the limits of which in all cases shall be confined to the smallest area compatible with proper care and management of the objects to be protected: Provided, That when such objects are situated upon a tract covered by a bonafied unperfected claim or held in private ownership, the tract, or so much thereof as may be necessary for the proper care and management of the object, may be relinquished to the Government, and the Secretary of Interior is hereby authorized to accept the relinquishment of such tracts in behalf of the Government of the United States.”
For more information on the Antiquities Act, go to: http://www.nps.gov/history/local-law/anti1906.htm

Time has become of the essence, and we ask that your immediate review includes; www.kalakala.org (especially the 2005 timeline link), and our KAF information submitted to the Secretary: National Parks Service (NPS) (2006 National Register of Historic Places copy, July 20, 2010 KAF cover letter, narrative, and supporting notes to NPS, Copy of the 2008 Save America’s Treasures (SAT) grant and bibliography
KAF has reached a critical point in time proving that we have exhausted all past efforts. We have been unable to find a way for the great State of Washington to see what we have seen and want to share. So, we must find a way to overcome their past and future powers, neglects, and transportation heritage policy delays regarding the safe harbor, protection, and preservation for the Kalakala in the future.

Therefore, after 59 years, we ultimately need to share her national credibility’s enabling the consideration of federal protections to prevent continued physical deteriorations while the Kalakala is afloat within Puget Sound waterways. And, to prevent the loss of a representation of cornerstone of the original Black Ball Ferry Line heritage and culture, known as the Kalakala. The Black Ball Line and the significant Peabody Family legends helped build America.

It has been a great privilege and honor, as a good steward and caretaker of the Kalakala, to deny the troublesome conditions subjected to the Kalakala since 1967, 43 years, by the powers of government. Also, to deny such state powers that could sink the Kalakala instead of allowing her to be taken out of water and onto land. The State has a law that all ships 62 feet and longer must go to a shipyard for major repairs. The Kalakala could never be repaired at a dry-dock located at a shipyard! The costs would never be feasible at a shipyard. Although, a marine rail and or the world’s largest ship lift are methods of getting the Kalakala out of water for long term feasible major repairs is possible in America today. And, it is sad to think that the state has never given the Kalakala a work permit where she is on the water in Tacoma, Washington! The word “deny” has two definitions, according to Webster. To deny in one sense, is to withhold from, as to deny bread from the hungry. To deny in another sense, is to declare to be not true, to repudiate as utterly false. Therefore, I begin by stating, “I have been given a divine gift of faith, strength, and fully deny that we have forever nearly lost 200 years of our Black Ball Line (New York to Liverpool and Puget Sound) physical related heritage, culture, and significant Peabody Family legends who all helped to build, and gave birth to our state ferry system for not a cent of tax payer money on June 1, 1951. And, it is now time for the government to stop denying the Kalakala the gifts she fully deserves from the government.

Conclusion

The MV Kalakala’s walk of Hope trail ends here in Washington D.C. Her story should not end under the torches at a scrap yard, nor should her story be simply written and bound between the pages of a historian’s book. She has always served America and its citizens well. The President of the United States of America must know that, as in the past, she always belonged to the people and will always belong to the people of America. No matter private or publicly owned and managed she must be given the freedoms and liberties of being protected with safe harbor for perpetuity. And, given such she can become protected, preserved, and once again shine to be shared with 100’s of millions more of Americans and people from around the world. She is a one of a kind, unique and national treasure ferry. Please, we ask that you alone now consider using your Presidential authority and use of the Antiquity Act 1906 to save these antiquities before it is too late physically to save her for perpetuity.

Kalakala’s last walk of Hope is that the President and Secretary helps to assure the Kalakala to be granted national level of significance and become a national landmark in America. Steve can be contacted anytime via email, and can become available for a meeting with the President or Secretary given at least 7 business days notice.

Respectfully,
Steve Rodrigues, President, KAF
CC:
United States Secretary of Interior Secretary Salazar
United States Washington, California, Alaska, and New York State Senators and Congressional Rep’s, NPS, National Register of Historic Places interim keeper of the records,
US Coast Guard Washington D.C. Commandant
Governor, State of Washington, Olympia, WA.
Governor-State of California, Sacramento, CA.
Governor-State of Alaska, Juneau, AK.

References:

1)Copy of MV Kalakala 2010 NPS National Register of Historic Places New Narrative(original 2006 register is available on line via NPS),
2)Copy of 2008 Save America’s Treasures (SAT) grant Interviewer comments,
3)Copy of 2009 SAT bibliography, and
4)Other past state and national public records are available upon request (both to the President and Secretary).

Supporting Comments to the United States President requesting the use of his powers to protect the MV Kalakala and a safe harbor under the Antiquity Act 1906

It is important today that true supportive national historical background information is provided for your review. Such chronological supportive materials can be used to confirm and to justify the many reasons we ask you to consider the MV Kalakala and a safe harbor protected as antiquities under the use of the Antiquity Act 1906. Although, the Kalakala (formerly Peralta) mostly served the City of Seattle during her ferry service life she also served San Francisco as the Peralta 1927-1933. Her homeport was Coleman Dock, and asking the President and Secretary to protect the Kalakala and provide her a federal safe harbor. The Washington Street Boat Landing Facility is only one alternative site. We have found other potential local, state, and federal sites that can provide the necessary short and long term safe harbor. They include locations states of Washington, California, New York, New Jersey, and Virginia. The Kalakala, World’s first streamline art deco ferry, must be taken out of water and placed onto dry land while undergoing long term major hull and superstructure restorations. But, the Antiquity Act 1906 is our first necessary miracle. She can be assured a homeport, and with it comes the long deserved national level of significance, local and state acceptability’s, and will enhance her to secure private funding from a sound and viable future projected business operating plan.

Rejected past 25 years (1985-2010)
Significant exhaustive efforts, not just under our new ownership during the past 7 years, but combined efforts since 1985 (25 years) have been devoted to saving her as an antiquity. Yes, efforts started over 25 years ago by Mr. Green and his partner’s idea that was presented to the City of Kodiak, State of Alaska, and City of Seattle; “that the Kalakala was a national treasure, and deserved to be returned to Seattle after being buried in the State of Alaska for nearly 20 years”. Their proposal ended after being denied by the City of Seattle Economic Development Director at the time requesting safe harbor within Seattle’s waterfront. Today, 25 years later, the City of Seattle past Director, is now our State of Washington Department of Transportation Washington State Ferries Director! And, ultimately not only has Mr. Green failed (1985) but the original Kalakala Foundation failed (1998-2003: dissolved and sold Kalakala under federal superior court forced bankruptcy sale), and today under the guidance’s of a new Kalakala Alliance Foundation board of directors we are finally asking your review and support.

So, Steve Rodrigues, on January 27, 2010 started the, “Kalakala’s walk of HOPE” across USA, and the trail will end in Washington D.C. Today, I am here in Washington D.C., and have already been knocking on all the right doors within Congress, National Parks Service, National Archives, US Coast Guard, and US Department of Interior Secretary towards the last remaining efforts to save the Kalakala and her safe harbor. No Senators, Congressman, Congresswoman have yet given Steve a chance (only some staff have or are willing to meet). But, the Kalakala’s walk of Hope still has one last effort of HOPE. And, Steve is knocking on your White House door to see if he can get a meeting with the President to discuss the last steps of the Kalakala’s walk of Hope. He is now asking the President to consider using his powers of the Antiquities Act 1906 to save the Kalakala as a structure that deserves the protection as one of our nation’s antiquities and national landmarks.

Reasons to consider the MV Kalakala National with National Level of Significances
Important individuals of the past
The Peabody family, Dr. Adolph Diesel, Anhauser Busch, Sulzer Brothers, Raytheon, and the Boeing Company all are important individuals and businesses who truly, without them, the Kalakala would have never been an American icon, become a legend, nor be able to become registered within the National

Register of Historic Places with national levels of significances. And, without the famous Peabody family the Kalakala would have never been envisioned at all.
The 1935 MV Kalakala (formerly 1927 Peralta) and the original Black Ball Line fleet
The 1935 MV Kalakala (formerly 1927 Peralta) and the original Black Ball Line fleet impacted many of our nation’s States of California, Washington, Alaska, and New York in their significant past. And, other highly significant persons and businesses who built America’s land and water transportation systems have influences that allow her to retain such national levels of significances.

Other comparative National Treasures across America

The Kalakala is as significant as many other ships in America. Such as, USS Intrepid, USS Massachusetts, last operating Liberty ships Jeremiah and Brown, USS Constitution (Old Ironsides), C.W. Morgan, SS Queen Mary, SS Berkeley, many replica of Packet and Schooner ships, SS United States, SS Virginia V, naval submarines, USS “Eagle”, C.A. Thayer, MV Santa Rosa, and many other non-profit organizations like Mystic Seaport and many other maritime museums, such as, San Francisco National Maritime Museum have similar national significances that represent a piece of our nations landmarks or maritime treasures. The Kalakala compares to be equal to or even to have beyond others national significances, and deserves equal status regardless of what she looks like today. The C.W. Morgan has had tender loving care for over 45 years now, and is only 2 years away from being 100% restored to enable her to ply the Atlantic again. This time to greet the whales as a friend not a foe.

The Kalakala is such that, she is a one of a kind, architecturally unique, and a vessel that has never been forgotten by thousands of enthusiasts from around the world. Her unique architectural, engineering, and mechanical national significances do represent many eras of America’s historic major events that are significant in America past.

She deserves to be approved by the Secretary with a national level of significance and registered within the National Register of Historic Places. And, she deserves to be considered by the President to be recognized as an antiquity and become one of our nation’s national landmarks. She deserves t be given federal protection under the Presidents authority to use the Antiquity Act 1906.

My last Hope is that the President and the Secretary can see what the State has never wanted to see. And, that our leaders in government stop denying the Kalakala the gifts she fully deserves of being a national treasure.

Kalakala News


image borrowed from bing

January 5, 2012

There's an old joke: The two happiest days in a man's life are the day he buys a boat and the day he sells it.

That's certainly been true for the owners of the Kalakala, a historic art deco ferry that currently resides in Puget Sound. Launched in 1935, the vessel's trials and tribulations have become the stuff of legend in Seattle.

First, it was an icon; a steel-bullet-shaped ship with round portholes that earned itself a mention in the Bing Crosby and Andrews Sisters song "Black Ball Ferry Line." You can still find pictures of it cruising past the Space Needle, looking like it belongs to Buck Rogers.

When it debuted in 1935, the Kalakala was the fastest and largest ferry on Puget Sound.
Steve Rodrigues has spent eight years trying to restore the Kalakala, and calling him an enthusiast would be an understatement.

"It was silver; the sun made her glow in the light," he says. "Nothing exists like the Kalakala in the world. It is art deco. There is nothing that ever followed that ... looked like it again."

But that futuristic beauty has faded. Today, the Kalakala is tied up in an industrial waterway near Tacoma, Wash. Under the leaden winter skies — despite the efforts of Rodrigues and some volunteers — the rust is what most stands out.

"We have kept her afloat," Rodrigues says. "We have worked with the government and made proposals for waterfront moorage for the Kalakala and preserving it to her glory and sharing it with the community. But it failed."

Still, Rodrigues isn't the first to fail. He bought the Kalakala at a bankruptcy auction from the previous group of would-be restorers. For the past decade, the old ferry has been something of a sad joke around Puget Sound, getting evicted from one potential home after another. Some say it's not worth saving; it may have looked cool, but it was hard to maneuver and kept running into things.

Now, the Kalakala has overstayed its welcome in Tacoma. Last year, the Coast Guard set a deadline for Rodrigues to repair the boat's hull and arrange for it to be towed. They've also declared it a "hazard to navigation."

"It has to go," says Coast Guard spokeswoman Regina Caffrey. "If the Kalakala sinks, it would block the entirety of the waterway, and it could impact up to $23 million worth of commerce in one month."

But Rodrigues denies that the Kalakala is a hazard. He gets angry at the very idea, accusing the media of conspiring with the government to smear the ferry's reputation.

Right before the Coast Guard's December 2011 deadline, Rodrigues announced he'd sold the ferry for $1 to an "anonymous billionaire." He insists the mysterious patron has committed to spending the necessary millions for a proper restoration.

Many in Seattle have grown to be skeptical of such Kalakala comeback announcements, but Cheryl DeGroot of Tacoma is still sentimental. DeGroot grew up riding the Kalakala in the '50s, and then, after the ferry's retirement, she stumbled across it again in the '70s in Kodiak, Alaska. It had been towed there to house a fish cannery, and DeGroot got a job onboard shelling shrimp.

"I'm getting some pictures today, because it's so special," she says on a recent visit to the Tacoma dock. "It looks better than I thought it would, actually. Not too bad — it's still floating!"

Despite all the setbacks, the Kalakala does seem to have a tendency to stay afloat.

"I love the Kalakala so much I drew a comic about her getting turned into a space ship." http://www.holisticforgeworks.com/art/#comic-books

–RR Anderson

Man, wouldn't that be cool?

There Are a Handful


image by yi ching lin

there are a handful


there are a handful
of things about keeping
time that leaves
uncertainty –
springing forward,
falling back,
marking the
certainty
of your death
on two calendars.
if tonight’s moon
looks like the same
moon that took
you, give
us a sign that
time will move on
.

Yi Ching Lin

Posted over on her site Yi's Bits

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Your Cousin is Lying


image borrowed from bing

Your Cousin is Lying

I never went cow-tipping, though once, Stephen
wasn't looking and backed into a sleeping one,
which got up, moved away, and sat back down—
because cows sleep bellies to the ground,
that's horses you're thinking of that sleep standing.

I never made moonshine, though I admit,
my father did, but that was at least a decade
before I was born. We smoked meth. Or pot
or drank stuff we filched from our parents' liquor
cabinets or coolers. We made things from eye drops
and allergy meds. We huffed glue. We sucked
aerosol cans. Why grow it, process it, hide
it when you can buy it? We're not farmers
anymore. We work at Wal Mart. We get discounts.

I never lynched anybody, but we shot each other
same as you do over the color of our
clothes and the contents of our
wallets. I dated black girls—well, I would've
if they'd have had me.

I'm just as educated as you:
I've seen the same TV shows, sat
through the same droning lectures
based on the Prussian model.
If you were from here. you'd know;
it's just like there. Only not the same.


C.L. Bledsoe

Posted over on his site Murder Your Darlings

The Other


image borrowed from bing

The Other

It was the fat preacher who made us afraid
with his stories of shameful creatures
who shared our names. It was his dirty smile,
his greasy hair, the stains on his lapel
that made us uneasy when he talked about clean
souls. It was his belligerent children with torture
in their eyes who made us doubt his understanding
of the role of a father, in heaven or otherwise.

He told us to doubt ourselves, to trust the absurd
notion that life is anything other than joy and pain
and random collisions of matter. They’re coming
for us, he said. I’d be afraid to think, if I was like you,
he said; I might think something wrong.

Cortney Bledsoe

Posted over on his site Murder Your Darlings

You Push, I Push Back


image borrowed from bing

You Push I Push Back

The ex-priest spoke of women
in the third person
to their faces, took us on a tour of churches
of New York, where the squirrels are segregated
and rudeness is considered style.
He finished eating before we’d
even sat down. He was
an old teacher of my wife’s father
and adored the man.
When we walked in the door after a five
hour drive, he stood us in front
of the piano to sing; “Start again,” he’d say.
“I don’t see how you could like anyone
who doesn’t like me,” my mother in law said
to her husband, who lost the smile
he’d worn since we’d arrived.

C.L. Bledsoe

Posted over on his site Murder Your Darlings

After a Night of Songwriting


image borrowed from bing

after a night of songwriting, laughter
and sweet leaf tea



I’d like an old woman
to wrap my tired shoulders
in a shawl of sleepy seaweed.

I’d like the seaweed to wrap
all my Christmas presents this year
in yellow pansies and cedar shingles.

I’d like my shingles to hold fast
through days and nights of snow
and dusty misplaced bedroom slippers.

I’d like my bedroom slippers to be
made from Doc Marten leather that
has danced in Australia at least twice.

I’d like Australia to move a little closer
to Texas, and I suppose with tectonic shifts,
Australia soon will be at my front door knocking.

I want Milo to open my front door
and step robustly inside, leaving his
wet umbrella out on the bottom step.

I want my bottom step to welcome
all peoples from all lands and invite them
in for tea and poached eggs on toast tomorrow.

I want tomorrow to be as awesome as
this moment seems to be for me, here after
midnight still up with the aroma of earlier burgers.

I want my burgers to all be organic,
on softest nine-grain buns, with dashes
and lashes of relish from an old woman’s fridge.

I want an old woman’s fridge to be full
of apples, celery, carrots, and walnuts
and I want her to invite me to lunch daily.

And if she felt so inclined to pop in with Milo,
take up my broom and waltz around
with it until all the dust

was in the old cast iron frying pan,
I wouldn’t mind.
And if the frying pan should marry the vacuum

cleaner to the dishwasher I wouldn’t mind
that either. I’d only mind if I forgot to let Milo
open the door to your heart.


Jannie Funster


When I was a teen I thought that Pete Townsend song 
went ”Let Milo Open The Door.”
Years later I realized the lyric was actually 
“Let My Love Open The Door.”



Posted over on her site Jannie Funster

All About Bravery


image by ursula

All About Bravery


There are no children in the playground
on this bright and sunny, but bracing, day.

Perhaps the wind is too cold for them?
Or, more than likely, for their minders?
Children don't feel the cold when
they are running around, but adults
idly sitting on benches do.

But aconites and snowdrops are willing
to brave the sharp winds and
stick their heads above ground.

Even the daffodils are fattening
and showing colour.

I've never before seen a January
like this in the Valley.

I sincerely hope we are not going
to have a severe shock to the system.
There is plenty of time left
for winter to punish us.

These are traditionally the coldest days of winter.

Keep good watchdogs about you these dark nights!



Ursula White

aka: Friko

Posted over on her site Friko"s World

It's Hard to Assess


image borrowed from bing

it's hard to assess

it’s hard to assess
the disappointment,
measure the disbelief,
but you’ve been there –
we all have – forehead
glued to the window,
hands framing face,
eyes looking in,
searching, searching
.

Yi Ching Lin

Posted over on her site Yi's Bits

Here - Across Blocks Of


image by yi ching lin

here - across blocks of

here – across blocks of
concrete and locked
gates, in a seemingly
deserted perimeter –
is a sign of the times:
a gathering, some
companionship, maybe
camaraderie, but
definitely no deliveries
.
Yi Ching Lin

Posted over on her site Yi's Bits

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Upside Down Stamps


image borrowed from brian

Upside Down Stamps


Why is it we expect honor among predators
whose core intention is their own coronation?
this is not Camelot, nor some fictional play
enacted out by two bit actors in the public theatres

Guinevere's waded into Manhattan from the harbor,
laid down her tablet, bent over & taken up jousting,
not surprising when under tarnish her torch is just sputtering
it's all over the nightly news at six,
but king Arthur's cronies are obviously oblivious,

The round table is taking bets, ante in is 300 Clevelands,
pocket change to hustlers sporting private jets
fueled by corporate sponsorships,
ok lets be PC and call them endorsements
just don't get caught up in the fine print
of, in return, what they expect
& in our silence what we accept,
great divide growing between us & our political connects

(Record scaAAtCccH) Is this thing on? Let me clear my throat

And remind you we have the right to vote
(for whoever they put in front of us),
our rubber stamp to make it due process,
indoctrinated from birth by the school & the steeple,
that silent devotion is what makes you humble,
cause that's how it works in the land of and for
and by the invisible people,

But before you rattle your swords & get to fist pumping
or jump just because someone says jump in,
ask yourself this, how far are you willing to go
when the revolution gets uncomfortable---
realizing we are responsible cut bets on political saviors
wielding excalibre & start acting like 'We the People'

Want something other than a messy divorce, founded in ignorance
like a spouse on the couch, behind whose back we bad mouth
for our own impotence, raising children bearing scars
of a broken nation cause we were too busy pointing fingers
to take action---a more perfect union, it don't just happen


Brian Miller

Posted over on his site Way Station One
Listed as #2 over on dVerse Poets-Open Link Night 28

America! America!


painting by sherpard fairey

America! America!!

At 04:00am, PST, it became official.
I turned on CNN and it was announced in bold print:
BARACK OBAMA IS OUR NEW PRESIDENT
OF THESE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA!!!!!

Praise God,
praise Jesus,
praise the intellect and good instincts of the people,
the same people who have suffered for eight years
under the auspices of the Great Oil Party.

Obama did it right,
Hurrah, hurrah!!
He put his battalion of barristers
out there watching
the polling places like hawks,
ready for a scrap,
ready to prosecute,
and the GOP goons, the redneck sombitches,
the fascist skinhead super-patriots,
the good old boys, the demagogues, the bullies
all kept their greasy hands in their pockets;
no hanging chads,
no cops keeping the black voters from the polls,
no screwed up polling machines,
no Jeb Bush to rig the situation, to put in the fix,
no excuses, just
the righteous election of
the first black President of the United States!

America,
we are the winners,
we can once again feel that swelling in our chest
as we announce we are Americans,
and we are proud this morning,
pride putting a strut in our step,
pride that has been pushed down and back
like heartburn
for much too long;
the rescue, the resurrection of the emotion
we all felt in elementary school saluting the flag,
cheering for JFK, protesting the war in Viet Nam,
hating LBJ, hating Richard Nixon,
tolerating Ronald Reagan,
reaching out to Jimmy Carter,
watching the Lion in the Desert,
Islam,
rise up from the dust and ignorance,
and stab so many of us
squarely in the heart.

Obama at his rally late last night said,
“America, this campaign was not hatched
in the halls of Washington.
This campaign was created because
you demanded it,
and now I assure you,
this is your victory,
and you will once more be proud
of a government of the people, for the people,
and by the people
that shall not perish from the earth!”

Thanks for sharing, Barack,
our hero, our eloquent leader,
the first of many to come we hope,
thank you Jesus,
you are the Sidney Poitier of politics,
the Jackie Robinson of the White House;
the first, the first, the first man to step up
with solid compassion,
with truth in both fists,
with clear eyes,
with a good heart,
and now you have a firm grip on the helm,
and you will need it,
for there are dark days yet to come
as you struggle to bring America
back from the brink,
out of the quagmire of stupidity and greed.

You have wrested control
out of the hands of zealots,
of the Illuminata, the skull and bones boys,
the rich assholes who have tipped the balance
directly into their deep and treacherous pockets.

Never has this been done so cleanly,
so completely.
You rubbed their noses in their own feces.
You let the people create more money
for your campaign than the politicos
could ever have dreamed about,
you have stopped Sarah Palin
from being a heartbeat away from the power
she did not deserve, nor should
have had under any circumstances.

Now the work begins.
We must form a ring around your family,
around you, millions deep, with each of us
more than willing to take a bullet for you,
that bullet
the John Birchers are already polishing.
We must protect you so that you can protect us,
divine reciprocity, democracy in action.

I wept as I drove through the chill of this morning,
pounding my fist on the dash of my pick up,
pumping the air, screaming Yeah, Yeah, Yeah,
goddamn rights, oh yeah.
Now is the time.
The time is now.
America, America,
you will rise again,
yesterday we spoke with one voice,
and it was so strong, so bellicose, so clear
that the words were heard
in every corner of the globe;
the oil barons have been stopped,
the Depression has been abated,
the new Crusades will find a peaceful solution,
and being an American means
being color blind.

Glenn A. Buttkus

November 5, 2008

Listed as #86 over on dVerse Poets-Open Link Night 28

Would you like to hear the author read this poem to you?

Rage, Rage...


image borrowed from bing

Rage, Rage……


In senescent hours

oil at midnight blazons us—

savage cure for rust.


Richard King Perkins II

Posted over on his site Word Fresco

Deceiving Beauty


painting by cristiane vleugels

“Deceiving Beauty”

Untouched by senescence,
beauty sleeps.

Stairway dreams
caracol-swirl
in potpourri mist

and magic.

Hybrid kiwi eyes
(solar kaleidoscopes)

are eclipsed

by spell-bound lids
emblazoned

in global shadow.

Rusted lips
wrinkle and twitch
as a beastly prince

kisses

the incurably ticklish—
a savage attack

creviced

in the valley
of her unprotected
neck—

awakening beauty

so at last
she can die.


Shawna McAllister

Posted over on her site Rosemary Mint

Monday, January 23, 2012

No Cure


image borrowed from bing

No Cure

Senescence came upon him early,
brutally,
unkind.
He had watched his parents gracefully
embrace the passing of time,
seeming to notice age in the way that
subtile potpourri will tickle the nose.
He would have no such adventure,
savaged by disease with no cure
that marked his body like blazon rust
marring exposed iron.
Denied a cure, dreams dismissed,
he would never visit Caracol, or
New Zealand to eat kiwi from the vine,
or dance with his daughters
on their
wedding day.

Mark Windham

Posted over on his site Awakened Words

There Are Mornings


image borrowed from bing

there are mornings

there are mornings
that arrive already
in love. there is
nothing more to
add to the
flavor – it simply
floats in, slightly
intoxicated
with a kiss of fog
.

Yi Ching Lin

Posted over on her site Yi's Bits

Morning Cuts and Bleeds


image by paul bates

morning cuts and bleeds

morning cuts and bleeds
like the rest of us – it’s the
pin-prick test that seals
the recognition
.

Yi Ching Lin

Posted over on her site Yi's Bits

A Bruised Wish Also


image borrowed from bing

a bruised wish also

a bruised wish also
stirs in the
wind, echoes
with an etude
of a hundred seedlings
preparing to loosen
like stylish white
scarves, surrendering,
lost, studied
.

Yi Ching Lin

Posted over on her site Yi's Bits

The Year of the Dragon Finds Us


image borrowed from bing

the year of the dragon finds us

the year of the dragon finds us
half in and half out,
suspended
on the whim of a second
sun, another moon,
and embroidered within
their cosmic
sleeves,
another timeline
.

Yi Ching Lin

Posted over on her site Yi's Bits

Manifesto


image borrowed from bing

Manifesto

Standing at the mirror,
senescent, skin sagging,
hair frostier with each hour,
I still marvel at the youth
peering out from my hazel eyes;
the soulful eclipse of life’s energy
processed through life’s experiences,
a musty potpourri of moments,
lingering, crouching caracole deep within
the occipital lobe, composing the novel
of incarnate days, ever ready to tickle
God’s fancy, posting a bold blazon,
declaring a savage shield, with an
armored kiwi atop an ice flow painted
proudly upon its battered surface,
a smile given as cure for apathy,
every speck of rust scoured from
each innards-gear, finally ready
to be me for another morning.

Glenn Buttkus

January 2012

Listed as #1 over at Shawna's Monday Melts, Week 3

Would you like to hear the author read this poem to you?

Border Patrol


image borrowed from bing

Border Patrol



Manipulated… we waste our days
doing as we are instructed.
Trained since Sunday school
to respect these figures of authority
more than we respect our selves.

Freedom is tangible
existing well beyond the confines of our mind
in secret meadows and hidden dales
where the air we breathe

does not numb our ability to think
to question the ways of the suit and tie
the badge and gun
the amount of dollars their allegiance earns.

Systemized and categorized according
to the idea of the great spenders
enforcing restriction as debt rises
and like the lambs we are

we walk willingly to the slaughter
as the need for more blood, more sacrifice
demands we suffer
so that they do not.

Banging heads against the wall
the bruises become our own badges.
Signs that WE are the deserters
in this war against the masses.

Dare we cross the lines
That they have placed within our minds?
Dare we take a stand
At the borders of unknown lands?

Where people are free to live together
In harmony and respect for another
Without the poison that has warped our views
And makes us able to disrespect our brother…

Run…run now! The fence is only as high
as we believe it to be...

Natasha Head

aka: Tashtoo

Posted over on her site the Tashtoo Parlour

Somewhere Along the Border


image borrowed from bing

somewhere along the border


I am not the guard at the border,
but the one they bring the body
not for the autopsy

but whats left to sew up after
attempting to put back together
some semblance of a life

& there are nights my fingers bleed
where the needles nicked,
my skin not thick enough
not always

i order chicken salad on wheat, comfort
by choice, with potato chips and a pickle
spear, root beer---not noticing my friend's

selection, focus being what he is saying,
concerned with decisions his daughter is making,
wondering how to handle while
allowing her to feel trusted & empowered ,
not see him as "one of those parents"

"what if i am over reacting?
what if i push her away?
what if..."

"she comes home pregnant," i interrupt, "how cool
will you be then?"

Still stuck in the tension between being her friend
and giving parental direction, as if she needs one more
person unwilling to listen to what she is really saying,
and I refuse to give permission to shirk the responsibility,
providing a place to lay the guilt when it happens

Will opinion polls & popularity ratings
keep you warm on those nights?

"Isn't it worth a conversation?"

A reuben. He ordered a reuben, which the waitress
delivers, sits untouched beside chips, but no pickle---

it crunches with each bite i take, sour on the back
of my tongue, as i watch his eyes for more than
a night of American Idol & ice cream

absently rubbing old callouses
on the tips of my fingers,
just to feel their texture.


Brian Miller

Posted over on his site Way Station One

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Silver Bones


Image by Glenn Buttkus

Silver Bones

Art deco ferry boats have always been rare.
We had one, the Kalakala, for a long time;
launched in 1935, it was like a Buck Rogers
space ship churning through Puget Sound,
like a king size silver turkey roaster with
three perfect rows of round portholes marching
along each side, open at the square stern
where the car deck access was, a huge
flying bridge protruding out over the bow,
capturing a hammerhead profile, two tall
bow doors dead center above a long slender
bow, pointed like a sea bird’s beak, resembling
a great shiny steel ocean-going Indian canoe.

It served the State sailing the Sound on several
routes, stopping at different island ports, always
turning heads, part fantasy floater, a majestic
proud polished chrome Dali vessel.

Once decommissioned in the 60’s she rested
at several docks as the newer triple-decked
super ferries propelled past her with disdain.
Someone in California purchased her and she
made the voyage south on her own steam.
Thirty years later a man from Seattle had her
towed home, wanting to clean her up and make
her into a restaurant and casino. She moved,
over the years from dock to dock, merely
an oddity, a tourist delight, partially ship-shape
several times.

Then she was towed south into the belly of the Sound
to the Tacoma waterway. Less and less people came
to look at her; largely forgotten, sad, neglected,
deteriorating, she began to sink, listing heavily
to her port side, exposing her starboard side
up out of the dark water.

Last month I read in the newspaper that the owner
had managed to pump out her ancient bilges,
and to get her back in balance, as she struggled
to proudly sit dockside flashing her tarnished
stainless steel super structure, her barnacle
blemishes exposed.

Once more she was sold to an entrepreneur
from California, sold for a single dollar,
with the proviso that she finally would be
restored, would become some kind of public
treasure. She was to be towed out of Tacoma
one week later.

So I set out to find her, printed up several Google
maps, grabbed my camera, summoned the sun,
and felt a rush of adventure as I drove off.
Tacoma’s tide-flats are a confusing maze
of waterways, one way streets, construction zones,
and restricted access docks, but I finally found her
late in the morning lashed up to a private dock
next to a foundry; catching a tantalizing glimpse
of her two hundred yards off the road behind
several locked gates.

I wormed back and forth until I found a parking lot
that went to the edge of the water, and I could see
her west of me, a quarter block away. I shoved my
lens through the steel link fence portals, cranked
up my 30X zoom, and clicked off some images.

Moving over one property closer, past a mammoth
warehouse, in a restricted lot, I jumped out and
snapped more pictures, but she still was obstructed
from view. While moving around doing my best
to compose partial tableaus, a worker in an
orange hard hat came up to the fence on the
other side. I asked him if I could get permission
to drive around onto the foundry property.
“I don’t see why in hell not,” was his reply.

In a few moments I parked excitedly alongside
an empty office trailer, staring at a weather-beaten
sign that read, “See the Kalakala; soon to be restored.”
Soon I stood next to the silver lady, and she seemed
to be aware of me, preening, posing; her bow doors
sprung open for gulls and crows, two large ore truck
tires hanging fat starboard to protect her from the dock,
her beautiful Indian name covered with plywood, her
railings bent up all along her upper deck, the flying bridge
decorated with broken porthole glass, the car deck
dry and empty, her benches and dining tables lop-sided,
pocked everywhere with rust holes, her silver bones
fully exposed, barely intact, like an old
athlete rising up one more time, but too
arthritic to even bow during the last applause.

I captured images until I lost the light, standing
there with her for a time in the twilight, watching
her patina edges soften, said my own farewells,
bid her a safe journey and drove off wearing
a tight smile, feeling as if I had an audience
with exiled royalty.

Glenn Buttkus

January 2012

Listed as #50 over on dVerse Poets--Borders

Would you like to her the author read this poem to you?

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Jambalaya


painting borrowed from bing

Jambalaya

Tucker was holding her finally,
after the dearth of clues had led him
in mad circular patterns, a man in
a maze tearing at his uniform, oblivious
to the Creole de rigueur, his weeping
finally ebbing as he stared at her,

reduced to a double handful of pasty black
char, her bright anima already fled on silver
wax-wings, with tepid marsh gases busily
percolating over his steel-toed boot tops
he painfully bent over to retrieve a loop
of white lace once worn on her swan neck;

August in the deep swamp, cottonmouths
uncoiling brazenly on damp low limbs,
behemoth gaters croaking a terrible
reptilian sonata, its timbre chilling,
the fiery air thick with the acidic pungency
of skunk cabbage as he placed his sad
lips deep into the sticky char, zestfully
kissing the frailest memory of his
lost Cajun love.

Glenn Buttkus

January 2011

Listed as #11 over on Monday Melting-Week 2

Would you like to hear the author read this poem to you?