POEM TO PAST SELF IN FUTURE TENSE

 

 

www.rmengelhardt.com

 

 

 

MEMENTO

 

Better to feel

(Than be)

Blood rushes thru veins

And the heart beats,

Only one-day to complete its duty.

While eventually earth and gods shall all come

Crashing down

And kingdoms & civilizations fade.

And so please, I ask you only this;

That when I leave to let me take these

Few things with me,

The moon, the sun and the stars,

And the small traces of light which

Once reflected in your eyes

That I

Can no longer

See.

 

 

 

_________________

 

POEM TO PAST SELF IN FUTURE TENSE

 

Yours is a beauty of monsterous

proportions with the world

Spinning randomly into

Oblivion where all the leaves are all

Dying all the time off the trees,

Where misery makes its way into

Every small tissue stealing.

Yours is a world where

Beauty has fled and has left town

For greener pastures, has drowned its-

Self into the sea of angst & tears and

Has mixed its-self with alcohol &

Cigarettes, sad poems and

Indiscriminate men & women who

Already know that beauty has left

The scene,

(And they no longer care to find her)

And yet it is good that beautyhas

Finally found you and that beauty is not dead,

But was merely sleeping

On the sofa of your

Dreams.

 

 

 

______________

Poems By R.M. Engelhardt

From The Book “Nod. (moon, stars, sun … time)

 

Copyright © 2013. 

www.rmengelhardt.com

POETS ARE WELCOME …

 R.M. ENGELHARDT

 

“That’s the god damn problem with Albany, NY” She said.

“There are too many fucking poets “

In the city

Where I was born

They tore it all down

So many times

That we all forgot.

Because you see

I was born

In a place

Where the lives get

Lines and the stories

Become lives

Of their own.

Full of gangsters

And politicians, low

Dealers and the cops

Gotham city at it’s finest

Without a single hero

To write about it

Except us.

Because we’re just the fucking poets

And because were not the fucking law

And we are only here to tell the stories

Because this is all we own

Because we’re

The poets & the outcasts

And the makers of the songs

And the leftover soul of a city

That’s heading for a fall

And if Jesus came tomorrow

And if God closed the pearly gates

We’d still all just be the poets

Writing poems till the end of days

And we don’t write for glory

And we don’t write for time

We just write because we have to

Without a rhythm or a rhyme

So even if you leave here

Or you meet a sad demise

Remember that you’re a poet

And that’s just enough to survive

Because

 Without the words?

It all means nothing

At all

And the poets

Will always be welcome

“Here”

_____________

R.M. ENGELHARDT

Pushing verses Past Their Limits …

By Lynn Alexander, Full of Crow Magazine

 

 

engelhardtrmpoetR.M. Engelhardt acknowledges that there is a difference between the passive participant and those who live a passion-driven life, but can often be seen in “Versus” wondering if there is a difference in the end. Passion clearly perpetuates the creative imperative, manifest in poets like Engelhardt as non-negotiable, but to what end? There comes a time in the life of the poet where this question has to be dealt with. It is one thing to accept the terms of “the muse”. It is another to toil in the direction of some outcome, some goal. What, beyond that yielding and succumbing, is the poet desirous of? Fame, significance, appreciation, relevance? The poet succumbs because he or she must, but it doesn’t end there. The poet is driven to more just as the living are driven to interact in this world beyond survival. We do more than eat and breed and sleep, there is something that pushes us. But why? In the years that I have been aware of Engelhardt’s work, it is this willingness to examine these concerns head on and in a surprisingly candid manner that I think captures my interest the most in his work, which often gets into the problematic terrain of ego, and the ways that we relate to one another through not only our life’s work but through love and community. He states rather directly in “Versus” that poetry is dead, he comments on the state of popular culture and asks the obvious questions about the poet’s role in it. Why bother, and why persist? Persistence, I think, is the theme in Engelhardt’s work that prompts people to characterize him as “romantic” as many of the poems convey a sense of pining, portraying people desirous not only of love but of transcendent relationships. “She believes in something unseen”, (8, “Perhaps”) “I’m just sick of passing romances”. (“In Cleopatra’s Eyes”, 9) In ‘Versus”, we see that relationship between the speakers and both issues: wanting to do more than write, wanting to do have more than a date on a Saturday night. (“toys”, 6, “More than just another dance”, 2) This idea of wanting more, wanting to believe in and have faith in that but at the same time considering one’s observations and wanting to be rational. Persistence then is challenged by cynicism, both inner and external: “The time for poets has passed” “And someone once told me that honest people don’t exist anymore in the 21st century” “And someone once told me ‘That love…is dead.” Do we persist, press on anyway? In “Naïve”, Engelhardt describes the urge to avoid the trainwreck. In “Truth” we see people opening boxes, digging through metaphorical “boxes” of expectations mingled with mythology. What happens when people confront truth? Some thrive, some perish, some vanish immediately in the sight of their realizations. This brings us back, again and again, to the questions in “Versus”. What are we after? And can we get there? ‘We all grow older/Still trying to find our way/Like children” (“Any Day Now”, 11) Many poets grapple with a maturing phase not unlike the point around mid-life when one begins to really take stock about where to put energy, what to be concerned with and what to let go of. Some describe it much like finding their way, having gone through what some describe as a period similar to the honeymoon phase of a relationship. There are burdens in the poet’s world, choices about resources and time and energy and in the beginning there can be a sense of eventual payoff that in later years we learn can be quite elusive. There’s no denying that Engelhardt has love for the craft, but he pushes us to consider what that means, and to perhaps distinguish between the love of writing and the expectations. In some instances, the object of love can be easily interchangeable with “the muse” as both are subjects in these poems of that transcendent longing. The love that leaves for the man who promises everything, the “angel” who vanishes, the losses are connected: the poet wants to believe in more, wants to have faith in more, but life can be a series of losses, followed by grief. Engelhardt closes “Versus” with a shout-out to those who persist, who don’t give up, who keep searching and don’t give in, who stay true to the realm of dreams.

 

“I’m not sure what I’ll do, but – well, I want to go places and see people.
I want my mind to grow. I want to live where things happen on a big scale.”

 

~ F. Scott Fitzgerald

 

Walk Way

TEXAS …

 

steinbeck_2304260b

“I have said that Texas is a state of mind, but I think it is more than that. It is a mystique closely approximating a religion. And this is true to the extent that people either passionately love Texas or passionately hate it and, as in other religions, few people dare to inspect it for fear of losing their bearings in mystery or paradox. But I think there will be little quarrel with my feeling t…hat Texas is one thing. For all its enormous range of space, climate, and physical appearance, and for all the internal squabbles, contentions, and strivings, Texas has a tight cohesiveness perhaps stronger than any other section of America. Rich, poor, Panhandle, Gulf, city, country, Texas is the obsession, the proper study, and the passionate possession of all Texans.”
~  John Steinbeck, Travels with Charley: In Search of America

Without …

“Without magic, there is no art. Without art, there is no idealism. Without idealism, there is no integrity. Without integrity, there is nothing but production.”

“As honest as you can expect a man to be in a world where its going out of style.”

 
― Raymond Chandler, The Big Sleep

Raymond Thornton Chandler (July 23, 1888 – March 26, 1959)