I WAS ONCE DEAD TOO

In a famous painting
of Christ nailed to
and crucified upon the cross
I am the watching
leper on the right.
And with my one good eye
I watch as Jesus dies
and screams up into
darkening sky asking
his father for a reason

why?

And then, suddenly
as the clouds open up
and the rain begins
the Romans scatter like mice,
the water, burning off their
flesh like corrosive acid.
As I feel the wetness upon my
skin like the warmth of a beautiful woman
touching my face, I raise my
hands outward, and I am healed.
When a voice comes
which tells me I am now
the angel of death, and the
watcher in the eternity
that is time, wandering
the earth.

The screams of both Jesus,
and his murderers the Romans
now a distant sound & memory
in a world without messiahs
or miracles to amaze us.
Only questions
which remain unanswered.

~ R.M. Engelhardt

POETS WANTED: The Saint Poem Reading Series For Poets, Albany-NY

The Saint Poem Reading Series, Albany-NY

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SAINT POEM READING SERIES FOR POETS COMES TO THE UPSTATE ARTISTS GUILD
Reading Set To Bring New Voices & New Poetry To The Capital Region In The Arts Community.

SAINT POEM POETRY OPEN MIC AT THE UAG

THE SAINT POEM READING SERIES AT THE UAG

_________________________

Poetry is just the evidence of life. If your life is burning well, poetry is just the ash. ~Leonard Cohen

SAINT POEM : A New Open Mic For Poets & Writers Held Monthly At The UAG

Poetry…Poets & Experimental Writing. Featured Poets & Their Work As Well As Themes. These Are The Things That Have Made Poetry Open Mics Unique & Interesting Over The Years And That Have Kept The Voices Returning.
SAINT POEM Is A New Reading Series Which Will Encourage New Poets & Writers And Change In The Albany,NY Poetry-And Open Mic Scene. This Reading Is All About The Work, The Writing…And Most Importantly, The Words!
This Event Is Sponsored By The UAG & MythicAlbany-AlbanyAtNight And Hosted By Veteran Albany Poet, R.M. Engelhardt.

THE SAINT POEM READING SERIES For Poets & Poetry. An Open Mic Held Every 3rd MONDAY EVENING OF EACH MONTH!
7.30pm Sign Up~8pm Start Time. $4.00 Donation Requested.
Sponsored By The UAG & MythicAlbany.

UAG

Upstate Artists Guild, Albany-NY

Upstate Artists Guild
247 Lark Street
Albany, NY 12210
(518) 426-3501

http://upstateartistsguild.org

www.rmengelhardtpoet.com

Poetry Reading…

Poetry Reading

SAINT POEM AT THE UAG, ALBANY NY

    To be a boxer, or not to be there
    at all. O Muse, where are our teeming crowds?
    Twelve people in the room, eight seats to spare
    it’s time to start this cultural affair.
    Half came inside because it started raining,
    the rest are relatives. O Muse.

    The women here would love to rant and rave,
    but that’s for boxing. Here they must behave.
    Dante’s Infemo is ringside nowadays.
    Likewise his Paradise. O Muse.

    Oh, not to be a boxer but a poet,
    one sentenced to hard shelleying for life,
    for lack of muscles forced to show the world
    the sonnet that may make the high-school reading lists
    with luck. O Muse,
    O bobtailed angel, Pegasus.

    In the first row, a sweet old man’s soft snore:
    he dreams his wife’s alive again. What’s more,
    she’s making him that tart she used to bake.
    Aflame, but carefully-don’t burn his cake!
    we start to read. O Muse.

    – Wislawa Szymborska

    _________________

Saint Poem…


SAINT POEM

SAINT POEM

saint poem


 

Broken.
like the words or like the poem
or like the man who lost his favorite song
his muse, his wife his dog
and if it ain’t gonna walk, it begs, 

it crawls, 

and eventually dies

alone.

solitary-slow, old & torn up, screaming like some 
bloody blood drenched heart
a sonnet that once ached, breathed screamed in life
history, ancient war. a ghost echo
still heard by soldiers shell shocked & fucked up
by the night
whispering dreaming secretly, for sirens.

wives….mothers….but never, for gods

but only, for what remains 
and is good…right

and lo, tho I walk thru
the valley of despair I still hope
that there be some cigarettes there,
or corpses, celebrities with new boots

to write about

on writing paper

an inspirational travelogue
of the damned

of poems

as somewhere, in all of your nightmares
flying horses falter at the dome
and there are too many stars in the sky
the fireflies no longer seen

lost..and forgotten
and too full

of beauty.

So

Dear diary
Saint Poem,
Please see me thru another day
And may to thee I pray that the
words doth flow like the river
like life, like shit
the voice

of

old poems
mythic poems
death poems
haikus.
happy poems
koan koans
my poems
exist

to worship nothing
but the poem itself

for in the beginning?
there was heaven & earth
intellectual monkeys
and neanderthals in berets
and they, they all prayed to you.

Saint Poem…Saint Muse
Oh, speak to thee like
a third eye, transmission from heaven
(or hell)
Savior of writers block
Guardian of the ancient word,

Please, I pray send me another
terrible lay, an angry muse
an interesting day, or even
a sunset dressed in black

something…anything to write about
except you…

Saint Poem
Saint Poem
Saint Poem

______

R.M. Engelhardt 2011

UnSung Poets: Maxwell Bodenheim

Maxwell Bodenheim


Maxwell Bodenheim

Birth: May 26, 1892 
Death: Feb. 6, 1954 


Blind

 

 

Blinder than oak-trees in the wind
Endlessly weaving sighs into a poem
To sight,
He sits, the light of one pale purple lantern
Seeping into his dream-hollowed face,
Like floating, transparent words
Pale with unuttered meanings.
He mends a flute and sighs as though
Its shadow leaned heavily upon his heart
And told him things his dead eyes could not grasp.

To One Dead

 

I walked upon a hill
And the wind, made solemnly drunk with your presence,
Reeled against me.
I stooped to question a flower,
And you floated between my fingers and the petals,
Tying them together.
I severed a leaf from its tree
And a water-drop in the green flagon
Cupped a hunted bit of your smile.
All things about me were steeped in your remembrance
And shivering as they tried to tell me of it

Novelist and Poet. Once considered a leading modernist author of the early 20th Century, he is credited with introducing the spirit of French Naturalism into American Literature. His novel “Replenishing Jessica” (1925), a brutally frank tale about a young woman’s sexual liberation among seedy bohemians, was the subject of a famous obscenity trial that helped loosen censorship restrictions in the United States. When the court ruled in Bodenheim’s favor, New York City Mayor Jimmy Walker concurred with the quip, “No girl has ever been seduced by a book.” Bodenheim was born in Hermanville, Mississippi, and moved to Chicago with his family in 1900. There he became the center of a literary clique that included his good friend (and later enemy) Ben Hecht. His first book of poetry, “Minna and Myself” (1918), was praised by Carl Sandburg, William Carlos Williams, and Conrad Aiken. In 1920 Bodenheim settled in Greenwich Village, New York, and lived there the rest of his life. During the Jazz Age he was called America’s “King of the Literary Bohemians” and was notorious for his drinking, feuding, and womanizing. He was said to have resembled a young Kirk Douglas or Pat Riley, and women apparently found him irresistible. In one frenetic year, 1928, two women killed themselves after he dumped them, and two more attempted suicide. (A fifth ex-girlfriend died in a subway crash, her pockets stuffed with Bodenheim’s love letters). Despite all this dissipation he was a fairly prolific writer, producing 13 novels, 10 volumes of poems, and the memoir “My Life and Loves in Greenwich Village” (1950). His other works include the poetry collections “Introducing Irony” (1922), “The Sardonic Arm” (1923), and “Against This Age” (1925), and the novels “Blackguard” (1923), “Naked on Roller Skates” (1930), and “New York Madness” (1933). Bodenheim’s reputation declined after the Great Depression and by the early 1950s he was a homeless derelict, selling poems for drinks and panhandling. During the freezing New York winters he made his much younger third wife, alcoholic former journalist Ruth Fagin, prostitute herself in exchange for shelter. This activity cost both their lives. On February 7, 1954, the couple were found murdered in a dingy, heatless room; Bodenheim had been shot twice, Fagin stabbed to death. The confessed killer, Harold Weinburg, was judged incompetent to stand trial and served six years in a mental institution. The crime made Bodenheim news one last time, after which he receded from history. Today his books are out of print and he is unjustly remembered only for his dissolute life and lurid demise. (bio by: Robert Edwards)

Burial:
Cedar Park Cemetery
Emerson
Bergen County
New Jersey, USA

R.M. Engelhardt Poet~Writer ~ Albany, NY-Networked Blog

www.rmengelhardtpoet.com Albany, NY based poet, writer R.M. Engelhardt has published several books over the last decade including Nod~Logos~Alchemy~The Last Cigarette: The Collected Poems of R.M. Engelhardt & others. His current experimental book of poetry & prose is called “Versus~Lexikon 2010” A poet & writer, Engelhardt through his ideas & visions has helped to create a large amount of the Upstate, Albany, NY spoken word~poetry scene and is the host of Albany’s most interesting poetry-Performance forum “GHOST IN THE MACHINE” @ The Fuze Box on every last Friday evening of each month. Thru his efforts along with such writers as Thom Francis he has created such groups the Albany Poetry Syndicate as well as Albany Poets (Now www.AlbanyPoets.com), which have left a lasting mark on the upstate NY literary scene. His work has also been published by many journals both in print including Retort, Danse Macabre, Outsider Ink, Sure! The Charles Bukowski Newsletter, Copious Amounts, Thunder Sandwich, The Angry Poet, Zygote In My Coffee, Full of Crow & many others. R.M. currently lives in Albany, NY. His books are available on Scribd www.scribd.com

R.M. Engelhardt Poet~Writer ~ Albany, NY-Networked Blog

In Seasons Of

IN SEASONS OF

In Seasons Of

In seasons of

Pleasure
In her language
I live

Seemliest, fairest.
She,
My power
A gracious chance which I have received
Know
All others removed

in her light

hue/hair
her eyes
With lovely face upon me

she smiled

I turn
therefore towards love,

Lady,
Longing has come upon me
With clever
excellence
And a neck,  beauty whiter
than any maiden seen.

Wooing in morning

worn out from waking

Alive as in action. Happy-

Full.

Oh heart, oh love

Do not deprive me
For I have been worrying long since,
Endured for a time

Waiting.

Woman,

Fairest beneath her clothing
A song
Of she

A song of us

Now sung
By the lark

And the mourning doves
Where time is patient

And our patience time

Ours awakened
Ours now
And for-ever.
______________

R.M. Engelhardt 2011

SMOKE & MIRRORS

S M O K E  &  M I R R O R S


Smoke...

Dear Poet,

Please do tell us,

Do say. SPEAK

Of what is “Human”?

Shakespeare

Writing writing writing

Again & again

About love &

Betrayal.

And Mr. Blake,

Always writing

About all those winged angels above

Whilst Lucifer

Sits alone in his

Basement still sulking over

His big breakup

With God.

To be

Or not to be

Love, love me do,

Do you still love me?

Are we through

Etc etc etc.

Etc….”Blah.

But the real, the same question

Still and always remains.

What is love?

What does it mean?

And is it ever enough?

Ever?

For the sirens

Are still all singing upon

the shores,

And the muses are all still

Dancing upon

The waves

Of Humanity

To inspire.

The next.

The last.

The true.

The dead.

So is this what it

Is to be? Or not to

Be?  Exist or to not exist at all

As the universe merely spins away.

To feel

With consequence

Or hate?

But my dear poet;

God or savior

It all forever stays the same.

As you light up another cigarette

And slowly exhale the smoke

Into the dark night

Like words.

For it’s all done

With smoke & mirrors

_____________

R.M. Engelhardt  2011