A yoga teacher at Facebook was fired for scolding a student for checking their cell phone during class. I know -I- can never restrain myself from checking -my- Facebook during work yoga. Oh, wait. That’s right. My office doesn’t have a yoga studio. And I have a modicum of impulse control. Yeah.
The smooth touchscreen’s soothing glass,
Sidekick of the IPO class.
Cleaner than a sweaty yoga mat;
Why is there no app for that?
Oh, yoga teacher – how very quaint,
That you would ask I show restraint.
Absent is any courtesy,
I tend insipid emergencies.
Facebook: 800 million strong,
Silence dashed by the digital throng.
How can this multitude be wrong?
The friend request: a siren’s song.
Clarion call of postings new,
Notifications fast accrue,
Mountains of propriety,
Made flat by churning urgency.
What unjust deprivation this,
Barred from my electronic bliss.
The new message chime, in major key,
Laps gently, as a calming sea.
What shackles have you bound me with?
What cords and fibers chafe my wrists?
Oh, Carnifex! Dewey air of freedom no more.
Downward dog on this dungeon floor.
In case it isn’t obvious, you should know that Current Event Poems is taking a summer hiatus. Which is not to say all posting will cease, but it will be sporadic. Sometimes, a news story will come along that is extraordinarily compelling and demands to be put into verse.
I am certain that you all shared my -significant-, and not at all sarcastic(…), concern for the 2013 America’s Cup when you read that the roof of Pier 29 caught fire. I mean, c’mon people, the facility is central to the event after all. Once you read through the news, I bet you felt like your poetry itch had yet to be scratched…
I opened the paper one morning in June,
Taking a break from my routinized gloom.
I searched not for long – inspiration I spied!
“My cup runneth over!” – Psalms 23:5.
There on the page, was a tale of great ruin.
This fire at Pier 29 was a shoo-in.
I sat at my desk with paper to write,
To craft a quick verse, with hope to excite.
I thought of spinnakers, to port and to starboard,
And jibs that would strain as they labored toward harbor.
These elegant vessels are graceful for sure,
From ports such as Brisbane and Kuala Lumpur.
But brilliant white yachts and champagne toasts, you see,
Do not seem to bring out the poet in me.
The City looks on, awaiting benefits promised,
None too impressed with this show, to be honest.
And in spite of two million bucks up in flames,
With a pall cast over these nautical games,
I couldn’t pen words for the America’s Cup;
Because about it, I admit, I don’t give a fuck.
This poem’s not meant to snidely deride,
My love of the sea and of ships I’ll not hide.
My beard aspires to sea captain stature,
Yet the meaning of “stunsel” is still a head scratcher.
In spite of my dream to serve before the mast,
After this gauche show of wealth, I admit, I’m aghast.
Someday, if we each feel prosperity’s cool breeze,
My sense of restraint, this spectacle shall appease.
Give touring the Tenderloin a try.
The Grand Tour
Like a bomb that’s dropped on CNN,
From black, to green, to black again,
A flash that tears apart the night,
A blasting echo in eyelids’ sight.
To be back again in booming rage,
And spit upon a dogeared page,
Now this is how the rhythm turns,
With bile and blood the City churns.
So check the corner liquor store,
And look for life behind the door,
If you can see a garden grow,
Then toil and toil, and try to know.
I try to know – never think I do,
Don’t preach or lecture or presume to.
The fucking truth does not come cheap,
Can’t Photoshop and think it’s deep.
With the slightest guilt that builds unease,
SO HUNGRY ANYTHING HELPS PLEASE
Gum-stained sidewalks that dispossess,
VIETNAM VET THANK YOU GOD BLESS
Some musings from the streets of San Francisco:
A stranger steals a trowel from a bright sidewalk
And no one notices
Resignation and surrender rise
A mineral taste in the back of the mouth
The former owner incredulous in the street
A café full of useless witnesses
A nose ring in ox-like style
A bowler hat and purple velvet heels
Worn smooth and stained
To the owner, pristine
Patchy spackle snags accelerating shadow
Stretched to stamp a contusion
A girl attempting a polite exit
Not yet, stay a while
Forced to linger
Waxy leaves catch no dew
Sheer curtains motionless with dust
In dissembling light and obscuring glows
Chipping walls watch unseen
And then forget
Spires of glass, never high enough
Flinching at the indifferent sea
The gestalt of oblivion clings
While a blind man crosses the street eight times.
A woman bit someone over a parking spot. And, SHOCKER: the biter was determined to be the primary aggressor…
And so I said “Hey!”
“I was going to park there!”
And then she bit me
A car starts parking
Another rushes to join
Toothy dance ensues
Street signs stand mute on biting
Teeth are everywhere
This isn’t strictly a news story, but it is a current event in the universe of this very website. Tonight I will be attending the fifth of ButcherShop Creative’s “Jackalope” meet-up sessions. Current Event Poems was recently featured on their blog.
They are an amazing group of fearlessly imaginative people, and I find my creativity sparked when I spend time in their midst. Since one my goals for this website is to inspire creativity in others and encourage appreciation of the nuances of the Bay Area, I wanted to mention them. They are a good kind of nuance, not a drive-your-car-into-the-ocean or a kill-and-eat-housecats kind of nuance.
A mishmash, the jackalope brings,
Many heretofore unknown things.
Sweet taste of solved mystery,
Last line of your untold story.
How can this silly creature be?
From human mind it sprang with glee.
To stand for sparks and tinder dry,
For all we boldly dare to try.
The innovating oracle.
With creator’s knowledge imbued,
With perfect sight, the future viewed.
Antlers and hind legs sprinting,
Juxtaposed pelts, sinews – thinking.
A mind with hope and heart with blood,
Idle moments with promise flood.
Go forth now! In bright grasses play,
Under wet skies, pregnant and gray.
Fill the plains with unbounded fight,
The earth receives creative might.
It has been said that Facebook’s move to acquire Instagram, the popular photo sharing app, for one billion dollars was a move to eliminate a potential competitor… I honestly don’t know if this is true, but in light of the recent definitions of corporate person-hood those nine lawyers with nifty robes have given us, it all makes for some figurative hilarity.
To pierce the veil, that great legal fiction,
And see the truth of human depiction.
Conjured to further the dream of riches,
Rapacious force whose desire itches.
Come, for now we visit these workings grand,
And see what deference the law demands
Of men and women whose destiny lies
With glory, which their efforts shall devise.
Find articles of incorporation,
Which beget Delaware’s approbation.
That distant cradle of corporate form,
From whence their charters came, quickly born.
Through First State fiat came the entity,
Now, forges marks of its identity;
As from Zeus’s head came Athena strong,
So does this board, stock, and issued bond.
This Leviathan fills a green abyss,
A vast sea of cash, in banks mostly Swiss.
From the deep it rises to catch its prey,
A most earnest app, born by the Bay.
On bright water’s surface Instagram bobs;
This huge creature ascends to do the job.
A corporate form with jagged jaws unhinged,
Drags down its prize, its buoyancy infringed.
Bubbles and foam and silence: all that’s left.
And the City, photos now filter bereft.
This harshly lit world, we must all now mull:
How to capture these piers and circling gulls?