Monday, April 30, 2012

new poems by brigade member Gary Hicks

to a serious inquirer

                              for blindpig

answer your questions
by bringing all that you know
to the fight at hand

all the new issues
will pose all new questions
to add to the old

we're on the rough road
building movements that will fight
until victory

leninism lives
but only as far as we
cease to genuflect

marxism lives too
but please remember lenin
was his disciple

elements of style

                    apologies to messrs strunk and white

first it was grammar all
those terms all those schematic
blackboard charts telling what
kinds of words went where when
speaking or reading  this was
supplemented by penmanship
using india ink and dip into inkwell
pens assuring that my mother
would scream as she tossed
yet another shirt to scrub out
stains alongside my father's
automotive industry leukemia
laden work clothes.

later it was composition also
jammed down my throat  hated
it with every bone in my body
excepting some moments of
fun writing flyers and
press releases for the movement
and discovered i could really
do this stuff if i wanted to.

then writing in prison  letters
to the outside  rapping with
fellow inmates which meant
writing and talking way too
much  it served me well later
in and out of college except
that on campus i rediscovered
my hatred of writing things not
of my own  was i the only one
who realized that fifteen pages
or more typed  double-spaced
footnotes properly placed
was so so tortuous where only
five pages, triple-spaced
could say it all? but we were
training to be real or wannabe
rulers  and i suppose that
it's par for the course to have
so evil a skill to be mastered
the better to mesmerize and
baffle people out of at least two
sides of your mouth

when i discovered that i could
write poetry and proceeded
to do so i finally cut through
all this bullshit  and strangely
years later my writing improved
it was as though i had become
an outlaw fugitive from convention
and upon return was
convention's master by virtue
of knowing what laws to obey
having skillfully broken all of them.

berkeley ca   april 27 2012
on finding an abandoned copy of dreams from my father

                                                    for bill fletcher' jr

beethoven's paean to bonaparte
became an elegy
disguised as majestic symphony
when the general annointed
himself emperor

i am a poet, know not a
word of music but this piece
is eroica, reloaded

all of the sacred words
of the great hope
have become naught
the world which held
its breath, bated
has reclaimed the
sense to exhale

and this poem is elegy
not for him who forgot
the difference between
puddles on chicago's
streets and the swamp
running off chesapeake
aside the potomac.

this is an elegy for
the dreams all our parents
and all who came before
and who one more time
have been betrayed
by a system
about whom
our great hopehad zip to say having
found himself the
latest if privileged
passenger on the
good ship jesus

this is an elegy
for our african
sisters and brothers
and of all who
went before them
mau mau lost the
battle and now
africom* and al qaida
cousins! must be
reckoned with

this is eroica, reloaded
elegy awaiting symphonic
music in four-four time
triumphal people's te deum

*africom..the african command of the united states armed forces
berkeley ca   4-29-2012

Saturday, April 28, 2012

New poem by brigade member Jim Byron, "The Rules of the Game Have Changed"


When the pawns on both sides of the battle
Have built their own new city
And the bishop to the knight, he exclaims
That the kings and queens could no longer rule them
Wouldn't you say that the rules of the game have changed?

When the queen of hearts realizes
That she had been fooled
And that she too has been captured and enchained
And she sees that it is time to free the people
Then would you say that the rules of the game have changed?

So fold your hand; the jig is up
Take the rest of the wine that is left in your cup
When the game is over, there is nothing left to win
Cut your losses; it is time for a new beginning

When the laughter of all the jokers
Turns back into silence and peace
Hushes over where the swords once clanged
And the chips are left for worthless on the battlefield
Then would you say that the rules of the game have changed?

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

The Prizefight by brigade member Carol Denney

The Prizefight

a friend said he eats
for entertainment
giving me new perspective
on my melon
it was true
it was wildly entertaining
cutting it up
was like a prize fight
there was wrestling
fluids flying
it was exhausting
but I won.
of course, I
brought a knife

Monday, April 23, 2012

new poem by brigade member Sarah Menefee

red ant

that's what I am

a commie red ant

just see what happens

if you sit on me

with your fat 1% ass

that's why they call me

the fire ant

          Sarah Menefee

           written with the Occupy Your Visions
           writer's working group, OccupySF

Sunday, April 22, 2012

new poem by brigade member Mark Lipman, "THE CROWS"

Don’t you dare disturb
                 those crows.
Those crows been
  up in that tree
  longer than you’d know.
Don’t you dare disturb
                 those crows.
Up there they perch
  with midnight beak askew,
  sharpened talons gripping silky bark
  ready to tear the flesh off
  the wayward field mouse.
Eyes translucent black
  they see right through you.
You’d better have grit
  in your heart
  to travel in these woods.
Them crows be always
  one step ahead of you.
That’s cos they got 99
  to the 1 of you.
They may seem fearful,
  stepping back,
  retreating to their branches.
Just be careful overhead
  when you walk beneath
  them ficus.
Crows got a nasty way
  of keeping track of you.
So, don’t you dare disturb
                 those crows.
Those crows been
  up in that tree
  longer than you’d know.
Don’t you dare disturb
                 those crows.
Now, maybe you think
  you're gonna pitch a tent
  and stay awhile.
See what’s going on
  underneath them shooting stars.
And maybe you think those crows
  will just make way
                   for you …
… well, maybe they may,
  and maybe they won’t …
that really depends on
  your own intentions.
The tree is big
  and its limbs are wide.
There is space
  for all who wish to reside.
Yet, as you climb up high,
  into the thicket of those leafy branches
  do not be too surprised
  if the crows have all absconded
  and flown, now left unable to follow …
You might take the tree,
  but does that make you truly free,
  when their silence
  has stolen your thunder?
Don’t you dare disturb
                 those crows.
Those crows been
  up in that tree
  longer than you’d know.
Don’t you dare disturb
                 those crows.
They followed me home tonight.
I could see their shadows
  lurking above
  stalking my every footstep
  daring me to slow my pace
  pushing me forward
  I ran away
  feet falling fast
  beating damp cobblestone.
I turned towards a darkened alley
  candle light shimmering
  brick cages closing in.
They circled in above my head.
Cawing, their raucous voices
  taunted my path
  unto my very doorstep.
Turning silver key,
  I entered safer quarters.
Collapsing on my sofa,
  I took solace in the knowledge
  that not a moment of this
  would make the evening news.
Officially, they didn’t exist.
Those crows – gazing
  through my window
  pecking at my eyes
  filling my head
  with their social discontent …
  were only a figment
  of my imagination
… or so I am told.
Don’t you dare disturb
                 those crows.
Those crows been
  up in that tree
  longer than you’d know.
Don’t you dare disturb
                 those crows.
In winter, naked branches
  stretch out in all directions.
Their spindly fingers
  make nest for a flock of silhouettes.
99 crows have gathered.
They gaze onto the horizon
  watching and waiting
  they bide their time.
The sun sets burnt orange
  down before them.
Twilight marks their feeding time
  the tide is now uprising.
As if a cue had just been called
  they cock their heads
  and lift their beaks
  and though as if exploding
  they burst into the sky.
Streaking black the eventide
  99 crows devour the horizon.
Don’t you dare disturb
                 those crows.
Those crows been
  up in that tree
  longer than you’d know.
Don’t you dare disturb
                 those crows.
Now, maybe you think you’re a hawk,
  circling overhead,
or the noble and bloodthirsty eagle
  watching from on high,
looking down with ridicule.
  onto the swarming negro masses below.
But let it just be advertized,
  those crows ain’t no doves,
  ready to coo and die.
They’re too experienced for that.
Their lack of attack is based
  more on the intellectual,
  of knowing how and where
  to strike their blows
  to be the most effectual.
With all your speed and strength,
  the audacity of your governance
  you’d never see it coming.
The crows are everywhere,
  they are every one of us.
When we come
  it will be from every direction.
So, don’t you dare disturb
                 those crows.
Those crows been
  up in that tree
  longer than you’d know.
Don’t you dare disturb
                 those crows.

Friday, April 20, 2012

new poem from brigade member jimmy.mankind

The Mystery of Life.
the mystery of life is god.
do not be confused.
that is, you, me, them, we,
the elements in and around
are god.
whatever you don't know or don't get but like, love, want to tend, need to nurture
is god.
god is prevalent
in that we forget
spirit is a material issue here on Earth, where matter is immaterial.
god is the life force inherited from the wasted 
possibilities of the past.
god is soil, and where the clear waters run to
when they tire.
god is life, breath, care, love,
and we are god for knowing that.
the unDead seek to rule through their legacy of fear.
Seek the other.
follow the gleaning greening of life
the shimmery water which is sacred.
as our air and our breath.
we have work to engage our wild desires
and we learn to enjoy the process--
every step of the journey...
is laughter.  equal to any other.
to be happy before the victory is the victory.
for the laws of fear are past. they cannot allow 
happy again.
they sold their happiness.  yet
everyone can change: watch for new ideas:
and embrace what you feel of them.
remembering that the old ideas are what 
got us to here.
we are whole now
parts of a cell
we call ourselves
the Self.
we can still feel plan write talk 
watch the shadows as the weather changes.
our openness to change marks this step in human 
and makes us invincible.
love is opportunity
our only weapon is love.
it is what we wish to be and so wish it to be us now.
they'll push and we'll retreat leaving them flowers.
we'll teach.
we are already great because you are god and i am god, 
and i thank you for reminding me of that.
we are molecules in the same cell,
let's raise a cup of tea, coffee, water pure and simple for 
the people who surround us.
our next step is the beginning of our own dance.
you are the greatest thing
since sliced bread.
today is the best day of our lives:
yesterday's gone, and tomorrow a dream away.
you are the mystery of life.

this is that