Saturday, June 06, 2009


Perched like music on transmission lines
Electro-magnetic halos no entry feather signs
Silhouetted in sunflower with linseed eyes
Painted by madmen on the cusp of the sky

Who glide on the wind look down and defy
Gravity’s rainbow and high nested cries
Who soar down seeking de-appled worms
Wisps of light the circling season’s terns

Who nest to digest the lessons of the day
To Sing and to spawn, enlist and obey
The songs of the sunset the loss of the light
Mortality creeps on paving at night

Rooks move in straight lines while sparrows fall
No one to notice, no hunter to call
A head and a tail a heart for cat’s-paw
Blood no quench for this ill-tempered core

Feed me no lies on the arc of your dive
Feathering falling calculated to arrive
On branch fractal fragile sing a fluted refrain
All love’s tomorrows your perch to regain


Jimmy Bastard said...

As usual the words have depth of meaning rather than the sing-song of lesser works.

There are those who have it, and those who want it. You have it.

James Higham said...

Rooks move in straight lines while sparrows fall ...

Why do the sparrows fall?

the walking man said...

Prey and predator day after day all have to consume in order to eat.

Pisces Iscariot said...

Jimmy! Welcome back !

James: biblical reference?

walking man: true, but I had hoped there was something deeper here - perhaps not?

Anonymous said...

Quoth the Raven...."What Jimmy said!"

the walking man said...


It is a solitary life the artist leads and in that the halos are elctromagnetic in nature the aura generated is yet visible to the one who would look and see. What is an artist if not a predator looking for food, an audience, to be consumed by? The predator as prey and the prey as predator?

Physical blood is not the drink we desire to quench and slake the thirst but rather fragile ego requires a fluted, layered refrain from the predator and prey to once again lift us to the perch that we may start over again on our daily quest to be heard.

I see intent in everything. Not always the one that is attempting to be conveyed but rather in the images that present themselves to me. It is from there I will take the meaning of the poet...which after all is what the relevant school of poetry is about no?

Pisces Iscariot said...

walking man: it's as good a theory as any I've heard :) Not sure what the "relevant school of poetry" is though?

the walking man said...

The Relevant School is a charter school. The theory is that the writer can present the images for the audience to see. Images are fairly general. If you were to say "The white bud in the green field" It would generally be a universally accepted image, but because the image is general enough every audience memeber is going to interpret it differently according to the words that surround the image.

There are some who would see a clover flower and others a daisy or a whatever. Then others are going to search for a metaphor. Seeking layers whether intended or not.

But the poet, has simply presented the image leaving the interpretation of that image to how it is relevant to the understanding of the reader.

Sometimes in my own work I will present a general image and surround it with words indicating my own interpretation, while at other times I will intentionally leave the image unspecific looking to see what insight my audience has given to the image. The individual's interpretation becomes the interaction between poet and reader.

I have been experimenting in this style for about a year now with the thought being that the audience has the right to not agree with what I see. As long as they "get" the image I have done my job. It is their right in the acceptance as it appears to them and their responsibility in the interpretation of it.

Every poet, writer wants others to understand what is being said by them, but I am not clever enough to use words as multi-layered I believe the understanding only has meaning according to how it is relevant to the reader.

I look at the different theories of poetry


New Generation

Free Verse

Metered Rhyme

and on and on...

Each has it's own rules for a piece to be classified as belonging in this school or that school.

I was never good in school so I write relevant verse as well as

*shrug* It is my simply my way.

I like your writing PI, I do honestly appreciate it, but we have a completely(as it should be) different way of using language. I mean no disrespect and I like that you make your reader struggle to first acquire the image and second to try to see it through your eyes.

The difference is in specificity, you write with a strong intent on communicating an idea that you want others to see as you do. I write with the intent of having others see what their soul and spirit brings to their mind through the image presented.

I am grateful also that you are amenable to a dialog. Some writers I know have too much sense of ownership to engage with another in this way.

Great Peace to you.


Pisces Iscariot said...

Mark: Thanks for your excellent explanation and for excusing my ignorance.
Ironically I had seen our methods as the exact opposite with you coming from a definite position and myself throwing a bunch of images together and hoping for a reaction in those who can be bothered to read it - go figure.
I must say that I find the poetry establishment's (or any other establishment for that matter) emphasis on structure irrelevant.
I don't really see myself as a poet in the strict sense of the word since I don't have any real interest in poetry itself, being more interested in the creative process (and the feeling it gives to the creator) itself.
This is not to say that I do not enjoy the poetry of others (yours included), merely that I stubbornly (and perhaps ignorantly) avoid learning the rules, perhaps out of laziness, but intellectually in order to fall between the consciousness cracks and find what may have collected there.
Finally, thank you for the opportunity to discuss these (for me) obscure, but interesting ideas, since the opportunity does not arise very often in 'real' life.

Yodood said...

Poetry, Schmoetry
If the audience is the inspiration, it's just a prettified political speech. When dialectic curiosity pens words the poet's feat is compleat. Subsequent reader's connections come from deeper than the bits of words that floated to the surface and in ways one cannot intend. Feedback is always educational but if it is the poem's purpose, it's just whistling in the dark.

Pisces Iscariot said...

Yodood: on the mark as usual - I do enjoy a bit of schmoetry too tho'

Anonymous said...

Just came to say I like the image of 'linseed eyes', but then I had the privilege of reading real poets discussing their art in this comments box!


I am just an average 'audience', a reader who has never 'studied' poetry beyond school. I have not read any of Walking Man's poems (yet), but I do enjoy wrestling with the specific images you present Pisces!

Pisces Iscariot said...

Cinnamon: like you I have never studied poetry (and don't intend to start now) Thank you for wrestling :D

Yodood said...

Pi, knew you'd get it.

the walking man said...

PI The establishment of differing structures is irrelevant. Yet it is not to be considered a constriction in understanding the method and the reason for the classifications.

Believe me when I say I have never formally studied poetry or creative writing beyond what was self directed. No one has ever said this is this or that is that. The knowledge is honestly come by.

That said:

Rarely when I compose do I begin with intent, but rather a few words that I build intent upon. I try to let the poetry and other writing take me along with it in it's development.

In example in writing The Game (06-03-09) I simply had a first line and the rest, the intent was what flowed from that line. I was not actually starting with a specific image until it developed with he first few lines. Then it was directed as I wanted it.

Your self described methodology of writing, putting together random appearing images and looking for your audiences reaction to them is reminiscent of William S. Burroughs who would cut and paste lines from different sources and look for the reaction to the resulting work.

Collage poetry is what that is called today, back then it was avant-guard. And some people (yourself included) pull it off very well. Others not so because they are not as wise in the choices of images thrown onto the heap.

To me it is a bit disingenuous when Yadood says "If the audience is the inspiration, it's just a prettified political speech"
Is his own writing simply for himself? Why then put it on public display. Anyone who writes and displays that writing in a public forum is doing it for a multiplicity of reasons not the least of which is to entertain, inform or simply to cause the reader to think a bit more or a bit less in line with the writer.

Diarists are private. Writers are not. Writers always write for an audience or they would simply be diarists and keep their words private to hand down to a succeeding generation. there is nothing egotistical or shameful in writing for an audience. It is what sparks the feeling of having created something that others can see and appreciate.

I write because I can and because it is something I am tolerably good at. But I do write specifically with two goals.

1. with an audience in mind

2. to offer to that audience a moments respite or a moments pause in the course of a day they otherwise may not have gotten.

be well

Yodood said...

There's worlds of difference between writing for an audience and gleaning one's incessant journal for relevant insights to share with those who can connect. Similar to the difference between one who groks the depth of meaning from which words percolate and one who merely pigeonholes the school of poetry into which they are deemed to fit.

"A bit disingenuous" indeed.

the walking man said...

"There's worlds of difference between writing for an audience and gleaning one's incessant journal for relevant insights to share with those who can connect."

Please explain the differences further if you do not mind the dialog.

Yodood said...

It has been my experience that when I glean my journal for the 1/10th of my scribblings that apply more universally to the human condition and ideas worthy of sharing through a connection deeper than the variety of our nurturing within the cultural myth, I have been what I understand artists following their muse to be.

When I have a discomfort with my reality tunnel and want to change the world to relieve it by issuing anything from venomous invective towards the villains or or WTF rants for a kinder, gentler world, I have been what I understand politicians following a desire to control nature to suit them to be.

Clear enough?

Pisces Iscariot said...

Gents: apologies for the late response (I was away on a training course for the last three days)
Firstly I feel that you are both coming from positions that are relevant - Mark: you are talking about something that is very important to those of us that do write this stuff, namely the need for some feedback from an audience to make it relevant, and Todd: your words are a call for ego-grounding and not take oneself too seriously. I feel you need not be in conflict over this as the views do, in fact, compliment each other.