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December 15, 2018

Posted by Avram Grumer at 11:20 PM * 49 comments

Here’s something I put up on Facebook (originally as a reply to someone else’s thing) in March that I should have put here:

Hear the beating of the heart,
Deadly heart!
What a world of agony that music does impart!
How the beating, beating, beating,
Like a watch wrapped up in cotton.
’Neath the flooring, ’neath the seating,
All my plans it is defeating
With a pleasure misbegotten;
Going thump, thump, thump,
With a sort of muffled bump,
Oh the tachycardiation of his disembodied part!
And the beats, beats, beats, beats, beats, beats, beats—
Stop the roaring! Tear the flooring! There’s his heart!

Comments on Poesy:
#1 ::: Allan Beatty ::: (view all by) ::: December 16, 2018, 09:59 AM:

I like the Poe x Poe mashup.

#2 ::: oldster ::: (view all by) ::: December 16, 2018, 02:57 PM:

Poemses! We loves the precious poemses! We needs them!

(But what has it got in its nasty little floorboardses?)

#3 ::: giltay ::: (view all by) ::: December 17, 2018, 12:29 PM:

Naturally, I can't read that without hearing Phil Ochs in my head.

#4 ::: Theophylact ::: (view all by) ::: December 17, 2018, 12:29 PM:

Sorry; I can't hear you over these %$*@ing heartbeats!

#5 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: December 17, 2018, 12:54 PM:

I give the small anxieties of time
their due. Undemanding love
honors the vulture as it does the dove,
and treats each moment as it were the prime
second of devotion, as we lime
and the whole framework appears from above
and holds us here. Life gives us one great shove
into the carcer for no given crime.
Now, l encounter, in the airy place
where, being free, I make your heart to shine
as the true guide for my uncertain feet
in cheerful liberty of uncrowded space.
The weight of thought and feeling must incline
ourselves from any duty to retreat.

#6 ::: peri ::: (view all by) ::: December 17, 2018, 05:32 PM:

There once was a catcher called Posey
With a term sheet so long it was Rosen
But in a lick of a split
The ball club was licked
And that’s why there’s no Bridge named for Posey

#7 ::: Angiportus Librarysaver ::: (view all by) ::: December 20, 2018, 09:57 AM:

It's Greek to Me

How come I never can remember
The name of that pathetic asshole
Who way back in ancient times
Burned down a temple, or maybe it was a palace,
Just because he knew that was the only way
That he'd ever get anyone to remember his goddamn name?

#8 ::: thomas ::: (view all by) ::: December 21, 2018, 03:55 AM:

Wasn't he called Damnatio Memoriae or something?

#9 ::: David Goldfarb ::: (view all by) ::: December 21, 2018, 07:42 PM:

"Damnatio memoriae" means "condemnation of memory", rather than being a name.

Alas, the original damnatio memoriae didn't work: the man who burned down the temple of Artemis at Ephesus is known to have been named Herostratus.

#10 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: December 21, 2018, 08:34 PM:

I think that one was snark. Or at least not serious.

#11 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: December 21, 2018, 08:53 PM:

David 9: Even if we've failed to consign his name to the realm of the forgotten, mentioning his name joins the opposite side. Cut it out.

#12 ::: oldster ::: (view all by) ::: December 21, 2018, 09:20 PM:

It has been a while since I looked into the question, so I won't be able to provide responsible sourcing this evening. But here's what I recall from when I had it before me:

There are early sources that say the name is not known or should not be repeated; and there are late sources (centuries later) that claim to know the name.

So perhaps:
1) the damnatio memoriae failed and the name was preserved only by very late sources (though by what chain of transmission is not clear);
2) the damnatio memoriae succeeded, but later people thought it would be nice to know or pretend to know, and conjured up the name "herostratus" on a whim, or because its etymology (the army of Hera) would suggest animosity to Artemis.

Given the relative dates of the sources, I think 2) is as likely as 1). The damnatio may well have succeeded after all.

If I find some time this weekend, I'll try to substantiate these claims, which for now have just as much worth as they have citations.

#13 ::: Angiportus Librarysaver ::: (view all by) ::: December 23, 2018, 12:38 PM:

"Herostratus"? That sounds like a kind of cloud. Maybe the kind it takes some heroism to go out under. Perhaps if we could get the weather people to pick that up, the aforementioned arsonist could be properly forgotten.
Thanks for the various elucidations.

#14 ::: Angiportus Librarysaver ::: (view all by) ::: December 29, 2018, 06:42 PM:

This is just to say
That I got so tired of wondering
Why so much depended on that blasted wheelbarrow
That I got hungry and ate the chickens
I hope you will forgive me
They were so delicious
Especially glazed with plum sauce

#15 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: December 29, 2018, 08:17 PM:

Angiportus Librarysaver (14): ::applause::

#16 ::: Dan R ::: (view all by) ::: December 29, 2018, 10:35 PM:

Here's one written at the Trump rally/protest in Melbourne, Florida...

Never mind the preacher
dubbing him anointed
and standing at the altar
instructing mistrust;
nor the gold cladding,
the wicked, sensuous flab,
nor the flatulent breath––
god bless you,
nine women have lined up
to honor his greed.

Never mind his protestors,
you watchers of the grain,
whose eyes have seen
the beauty of the coming
of your Lord,
never mind facts,
facts sneer in prayer cloth,
and want you to mind.

The hell out, he says,
never mind the spokesmodel,
never mind the pedophile,
glory, glory, hallelujah,
never mind lives matter,
blue and white unborn
lives matter––
god bless you.
Monsanto lives matter.
Never mind lives matter,
he transfigures you and me.

Never mind the red hat,
never mind the train tracks,
never mind the wig,
never mind the mob,
never mind the piss,
god bless you,
his truth is marching on,
never mind his tricks––
everyone is sneezing,
never mind the obvious,
never mind your time,
never mind the red dress––
god bless you,
never mind carnage,
oh say can you see,
never mind what you see,
never mind water,
never mind the red tie,
never mind the AC,
oh say can you
never mind the toaster,
never mind the hell out,
never mind your brother,
never mind massacre––
god bless you,
never mind
the blender,
never mind
the plane door,
never mind
god bless you.

As he died to make men holy
let us die to make men free.
The hell out, he says,
to rousing chorus––
god bless you, and
never mind the rain.

The hell out, he says,
never mind the red,
never mind the dead.

Like never before, he says.
Like never before.

#17 ::: Tom Whitmore ::: (view all by) ::: December 30, 2018, 12:15 AM:

Discomfiting and interesting poem, Dan R -- thank you! You led me to look up (and share) your website.

#18 ::: thomas ::: (view all by) ::: December 30, 2018, 10:16 PM:

For the last day of 1923-copyright

Whose work this apes I think you know
He died these fifty years ago
He will not see me posting here
Or find my rhyme and scansion sadly low

His copyright still lives, I fear
And his estate might price it dear
To post his famous winter take
Before the chill of law can clear

But even rules for Disney's sake
Roll over to let new folks make
The Useful Arts will have their stake
The Useful Arts will have their stake

#19 ::: Dan R ::: (view all by) ::: December 31, 2018, 04:00 PM:

Tom Whitmore, 17:

Thank you. That was a discomfiting day, indeed.

#20 ::: Angiportus Librarysaver ::: (view all by) ::: December 31, 2018, 06:15 PM:

Thomas, #18: ::applause::

#21 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: January 09, 2019, 12:35 PM:

Thomas #18: A frosty one I raise to you.

#22 ::: candle ::: (view all by) ::: January 17, 2019, 06:21 AM:

What makes it so impossible to write
when things are going well, or only going,
is that too much, not happiness, writes white.

There is no easy way of taking flight,
weighed down by heavy knowledge, such as knowing
what makes it so impossible to write.

I once possessed the gift of second sight:
but all it showed me, all it keeps on showing,
is that. Too much, not happiness, writes white.

Throw out the windows! Let in all the light!
And ask the people to-ing and/or fro-ing:
What makes it so impossible to write?

Is there some Randian or Trotskyite
whose message, noble minds here overthrowing,
is that too much not-happiness writes white?

Or was I trying just to be polite
in stepping round (or, more precise, tiptoeing)
what makes it so impossible to write?

But beauty is because of, not despite:
the lesson, as you see when it is snowing,
is that too much, not happiness, writes white.

And yet there is too much, and day and night
I find the tide of feeling overflowing.
What makes it so impossible to write
is that too much, not happiness, writes white.

#23 ::: Cassy B. ::: (view all by) ::: January 17, 2019, 10:05 AM:

Candle, <applause!>

#24 ::: David Goldfarb ::: (view all by) ::: January 17, 2019, 07:46 PM:


#25 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: January 30, 2019, 12:07 PM:

Candle, excellent.

#26 ::: ConcreteLady ::: (view all by) ::: February 09, 2019, 10:17 PM:

Wow, that was really great! Teared me up a bit...

#27 ::: TomB sees spam ::: (view all by) ::: February 10, 2019, 07:56 PM:

Polite, appreciative spam, but spam nonetheless.

#28 ::: Jenny Islander ::: (view all by) ::: February 14, 2019, 04:39 PM:

(written for an SCA event)

Miniver Cheevy sobered up
And joined AA and met his neighbors;
Drank patience from a coffee cup,
Found harder labors.

Miniver took to walking then
From street to street, and blankly thinking
Of what to do on weekends when
He wasn't drinking.

Miniver found a little park
Where he had sat with many a vagrant;
The poplars murmured in the dark,
The air was fragrant.

Miniver saw a Medici
So close he heard his doublet swishing;
Miniver thought he'd finally
Gone mad from wishing.

Miniver walked behind the man
Through doors of steel, o'er floors of plastic;
He paid his fee and came upon
A sight fantastic.

Miniver found a tunic and
A hood with tassels gaily proffered;
Miniver found a maiden's hand
In dancing offered.

Miniver learned to bow and fight
And dance a bransle and sing in Latin;
Miniver saw with double sight
Each hall he sat in.

Miniver had a meeting in
The local parish hall on Sunday;
In other garb he came again
To strive on Monday.

Miniver never struck it rich,
But when he heard the armor rattle
Or when he felt the drinking-itch,
He went to battle.

Miniver fell and got back up
And what he thought, his hands could fashion;
Miniver lost his easy cup
And found his passion.

#29 ::: Dave Harmon ::: (view all by) ::: February 15, 2019, 07:22 AM:

Jenny Islander #28: Wonderful!

#30 ::: Cassy B. ::: (view all by) ::: February 15, 2019, 02:48 PM:

Jenny Islander <applause!>

#32 ::: Jim Parish ::: (view all by) ::: February 24, 2019, 04:59 PM:

#32: Those guys have been infesting The Reality-Based Community for a while; hate to see them branching out.

#33 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: February 24, 2019, 06:46 PM:

[Insert comments on concrete imagery and poetry here]

#35 ::: Joe McMahon ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2019, 12:25 AM:

Concrete is a composite material, taking
Fine and coarse, like sand, mixing
Aluminate and cement, binding
Some form of aggregate together.
Aggregate, cement, and water, forming
Slurry so easily molded, reacting
Chemically to form a hard matrix.
Additives are used, such as superplasticisers
With rebar; providing tensile strength,
And improving the properties of the material,
Binding it together into a stone-like hard matrix.
And when we were Romans, building the Colosseum,
Its dome, we used unreinforced concrete,
and built the largest. The Empire collapsed,
decayed, and use became rare. Seen no more.
In the mid-18th century, the technology redeveloped.
Worldwide, much of the material, substitutes for steel.

#36 ::: Angiportus Librarysaver ::: (view all by) ::: March 08, 2019, 11:15 AM:

Joe McMahon, #30: *applause*

#37 ::: TomB ::: (view all by) ::: March 09, 2019, 02:31 AM:

Joe McMahon, #36: I like how that poem is set!

#38 ::: CHip ::: (view all by) ::: March 27, 2019, 12:47 PM:

Avram: great crossover! (Crossunder? Crosswise? What do you call it when you mash up two works by the same author?) Are you familiar with Tom Smith's take?

#39 ::: KeithS Sees Inept Spam ::: (view all by) ::: April 03, 2019, 09:18 AM:

Bland spam @ 39.

#40 ::: Jenny Islander ::: (view all by) ::: May 18, 2019, 03:46 PM:

I pulled these verses out of a reaction thread to a cartoon that was making the rounds of Twitter. The cartoon depicts a boy doggedly chopping away at a brick wall with an ax while a girl on the other side is just as doggedly building it up again. First verse by digitaldiscipline (dot tumblr dot com), second and following by Niduran Doran (whose blog appears to be gone). Arranged and proofread by me.

The Craven
by Edward Allen Bro

Incessantly, I heard a smacking, as of some entitled dipshit whacking,
Whacking on my chamber door.
Resignedly, I placed another layer, voicing a quiet, repeated prayer,
“This dude thinks he’s a player, but I am not a point to score,
He should fuck off and bother me no more.”
Quoth the friendzoned, “Fucking whore.”

“Nice guy!” said I, “Total dildo–-nice guy still if nerd or dudebro,
Whether Reddit sent, or whether romcoms tossed thee here ashore,
Barely known yet still entitled, holding now your Tom Waits vinyl,
Begging me for something primal, tell me truly, I implore
Is this–-is this shit for fucking real? Tell me, tell me, I implore!"
Quoth the friendzoned, “Fucking whore.”

“Nice guy!” said I, “Total dildo–-nice guy still if nerd or dudebro,
By the mores that you abuse thus, by those films we both adore,
Tell this soul with sorrow laden if, by stalking me through Facebook,
You have gained a twisted outlook of whom those tropes are for,
Paint a rare and radiant dream girl whilst you remain a bore."
Quoth the friendzoned, “Fucking whore.”

“Be that slur our sign of parting, creep or douche!” I shrieked, upstarting,
“Get thee back to lonely anguish and your friend’s used comic store!
Leave no white rose as a token of the lust you claim heartbroken,
Leave my scathing words to soak in! Quit the name calling of ‘whore’,
When you lust for every girl, but when they say nay they are whores!"
Quoth the friendzoned, “Fucking whore.”

And the friendzoned, never scoring, still imploring, still imploring,
On some fetid old subreddit for a girl who will adore
The nicer guys and not the “douchebags”, unaware that it’s a red flag
To be his soulmate o'er him learning they both like the movie Thor
To fuck him for being nerdy even though he is a bore,
Then she says no–-fucking whore.

#41 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: May 18, 2019, 09:57 PM:


#42 ::: CHip ::: (view all by) ::: May 23, 2019, 01:05 PM:

@40: edge upward -- but very effective.

#43 ::: Concrete Lady ::: (view all by) ::: May 30, 2019, 10:12 AM:

I love poetry! : )

#44 ::: alisea sees spam ::: (view all by) ::: May 30, 2019, 11:01 AM:

It's not even poetry about concrete!

#45 ::: Paul A. ::: (view all by) ::: May 30, 2019, 07:30 PM:

Surely I can't be the first person to have attempted this, but Google isn't showing any obvious examples of prior art:

There once was a king Ozymandy
Who figured a statue'd be handy
"See my works and despair!"
But there's nothing else there
Just the wasteland, so empty and sandy

#46 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: May 30, 2019, 09:11 PM:

Paul A. (45): ::applause::

#47 ::: Allan Beatty ::: (view all by) ::: May 30, 2019, 09:41 PM:

Bravo for the Ozymandias limerick.

#48 ::: Jenny Islander ::: (view all by) ::: July 03, 2019, 06:14 PM:

My latest attempt to filk on "Jolene" with the culture of 1974 in mind:

Maureen, Maureen, Maureen, Maureen,
I'm tellin' you, I don't want your man.
Maureen, Maureen, Maureen, Maureen,
'f he dreams about me, then I guess he can.

I know the way they look at me;
Won't meet their eyes, but I can see
The way they look me up and down and grin.
I try so hard to be demure,
But when you look like this, they're sure
To say that all you ever do is sin.

You tell me that he dreams of me?
I know it hurts, but honestly,
I wish you'd kept it to yourself, Maureen.
'Cause I don't want to touch your man
And God I wish you'd understand
That men do what they want to do, Maureen.

Maureen, Maureen, Maureen, Maureen,
I'm tellin' you, I don't want your man.
Maureen, Maureen, Maureen, Maureen,
'f he dreams about me, then I guess he can.

I don't want a man at all.
They call me names 'cause I won't fall
Spread-legged for their lust--it's so obscene.
But I can see it in your eyes:
You think that I am telling lies.
I wish I wasn't so alone, Maureen.

Maureen, Maureen, Maureen, Maureen,
I'm tellin' you, I don't want your man.
Maureen, Maureen, Maureen, Maureen,
'f he dreams about me, then I guess he can.

#49 ::: David Goldfarb ::: (view all by) ::: July 03, 2019, 07:40 PM:

There's a surprising amount of fanfic on AO3 about that song. This one is a good one.

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