New Poems In The Fractured Nuance #1

Two More Of My New Poems ‘The Waiting’ and ‘Underground’ will be featured in issue #1 Of The Fractured Nuance Out Of The UK.

Check It Out:

The Fractured Nuance issue #1 (UK ORDERS ONLY) 

£2.50
Creative writing from:

Christopher Barnes
Krishan Coupland
R.M. Engelhardt
Christopher Evans
Megan MacAlpin
Matthew Walsh
Patricia Walsh

~ R.M.

The Fractured Nuance issue #1

TO ALL THE NEW POETS OF A YOUNG CENTURY

NEWPOETSOFANEWCENTURY.jpg

 

 

So

 

You want to be a poet?

 

Then stand in line

 

Because just like every other damn poet

That ever came before you

You’ll have to write

 

And Twitter, Tumblr, Fumblr

Whatever, will never save

Your sorry ass

 

And the Pushcart Prize?

They won’t reward you

For writing a Facebook

Status that’s poetic

 

And just like

Emily, no one no

Publisher will ever

Come knocking

At your door

Looking for your poems

 

So listen;

 

Because there is no new

Jack Kerouac, no new Bukowski

And no new Poe

 

And Shakespeare?

 

He threw down his pencil

A longtime ago after Marlowe

Bought the farm

 

So just like all of the most

Famous poets of old expect

No compliments, no fortune

And no dough and learn how

To live on noodles

 

And believe me

When I say that

When you tell Mom & Dad

That you want to be

A poet someday?

 

Don’t expect them to

Embrace you or let you

Ever move back home again

 

Because remember

 

That this is the life that you chose

And if you ever finally find

Finally write that one piece

That one amazing epiphany

That says it all and that says

Everything and that has the

Power to knock the world

On its ass?

 

Then maybe one day

You’ll be able to look

In the mirror and say

 

It was all worth it.

_____________

R.M. ENGELHARDT 

she dreams in syllabus

“You dream in syllabus, questions. And see the lines that others cannot.
And you waltz across the dance floor of the world with verses and wit.

For this moment
Is honest, simple.

But does not truly exist, or last forever”

 

~ R.M. ENGELHARDT

POEM WRITTEN JUST AFTER THE ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE

 

No one around

Not a single sound

 

 

Quiet.

 

 

Just like in the

Movies where

The world has just

Ended, just like

The calm before

The storm

 

Or maybe just like

Before a

Zombie apocalypse

zombie writer

 

As I sit here alone

In my apartment wondering

Why I am alone perhaps

The last human being left,

Perhaps some zombie’s

Next big mac & large fries

Tomorrow or maybe even their

Happy meal with a shake.

 

 

But what if I too have

Become a zombie

But just don’t know

It yet?

 

And what if I too am the

First zombie poet ever

Writing the first un-dead

Zombie poem?

 

Would all the other zombies

Read it? Or relate to it? Would

They understand my zombie

Feelings or sit around at the

Next undead Zombie Poetry

Festival and make snapping sounds

As all their fingers fell off or would

They even attempt to clap with only

Their one good arm left?

 

 

And what if I’m not

Really a zombie? Would they all

Just eventually accept me for who I really am?

Or will they all just be exactly like

They were before all this?

 

Just like all humans with all of their

Anger, jealousy, war & hate, murder

And all their petty unfair advantages

Over their fellow zombie friends?

 

No.

 

Because I don’t believe that there

Could possibly be a better,

More loving & caring, kinder

Zombie world or universe

Waiting in the wings, and

I don’t believe that they would

All just be friendly monsters

Who just like to eat vegans,

Republicans or tea party members

 

Because damn it

I just believe that sometimes

That the world could use a remake

Or perhaps just a reason. And I

Believe that if we just keep

Walking around dead or alive

That eventually one day we will all

Find our way to peace using or eating

Our own brains.

In the end.

______________

 

R.M. ENGELHARDT, 2015

 

Most Great Poets

Most great poems never see the light of day. And most great poets?

They pass away in the night unknown to a world that desperately needs their words.

 

~ R.M.

shadow poets

Heaven ?

 

 

old man dogAn old man and his dog were walking along a country road, enjoying the scenery, when it suddenly occurred to the man that he had died. He remembered dying, and realized, too, that the dog had been dead for many years. He wondered where the road would lead them, and continued onward.

After a while, they came to a high, white stone wall along one side of the road. It looked like fine marble. At the top of a long hill, it was broken by a tall, white arch that gleamed in the sunlight. When he was standing before it, he saw a magnificent gate in the arch that looked like mother of pearl, and the street that led to the gate looked like pure gold. He was pleased that he had finally arrived at heaven, and the man and his dog walked toward the gate. As he got closer, he saw someone sitting at a beautifully carved desk off to one side.

When he was close enough, he called out, “Excuse me, but is this heaven?”

“Yes, it is, sir,” the man answered.

“Wow! Would you happen to have some water?” the man asked.

“Of course, sir. Come right in, and I’ll have some ice water brought right up.” The gatekeeper gestured to his rear, and the huge gate began to open.

“I assume my friend can come in…” the man said, gesturing toward his dog.

But the reply was, “I’m sorry, sir, but we don’t accept pets.”

The man thought about it, then thanked the gatekeeper, turned back toward the road, and continued in the direction he had been going. After another long walk, he reached the top of another long hill, and he came to a dirt road which led through a farm gate. There was no fence, and it looked as if the gate had never been closed, as grass had grown up around it. As he approached the gate, he saw a man just inside, sitting in the shade of a tree in a rickety old chair, reading a book. “Excuse me!” he called to the reader. “Do you have any water?”

“Yeah, sure, there’s a pump over there,” the man said, pointing to a place that couldn’t be seen from outside the gate. “Come on in and make yourself at home.”

“How about my friend here?” the traveler gestured to the dog.

“He’s welcome too, and there’s a bowl by the pump,” he said. They walked through the gate and, sure enough, there was an old-fashioned hand pump with a dipper hanging on it and a bowl next to it on the ground. The man filled the bowl for his dog, and then took a long drink himself.

When both were satisfied, he and the dog walked back toward the man, who was sitting under the tree waiting for them, and asked, “What do you call this place?” the traveler asked.

“This is Heaven,” was the answer.

“Well, that’s confusing,” the traveler said. “It certainly doesn’t look like heaven, and there’s another man down the road who said that place was heaven.”

“Oh, you mean the place with the gold street and pearly gates?”

“Yes, it was beautiful.”

“Nope. That’s Hell.”

“Doesn’t it offend you for them to use the name of Heaven like that?”

“No. I can see how you might think so, but it actually saves us a lot of time. They screen out the people who are willing to leave their best friends behind.”

~ Author Unknown

The True Beauty Of All Things

The true beauty of all things are in their true appearance and true nature.

~ R.M. Engelhardt

 

storm

Ever After

writer2.jpgSome may read the words, others not. But the poem or the story never truly ends. The writers will write and singers will sing and every tomorrow is just another beginning. The human heart and voice, just like the muse is something eternal. And when we all drop off the map or walk somewhere off into the afterlife another kid will be there to take our place. Dreaming and creating their story, their poem, the world.

~ R.M. ENGELHARDT

Everette Maddox : Poet

maddox                                                                             (1944 – 1989)

POEM

After everything quits,
things continue
happening. The phone
rings. A knock comes
at the door. Lightning
flashes across the bed
where you bend, looking
at the dictionary.
Asleep, you keep waking
from dreams. The surface
of your life keeps
being broken, less and less
frequently, at random.
Raindrops after a storm:
surprise: the ghost of awe.

He’s been called the unofficial poet laureate of the French Quarter. Everette Maddox (1944-89) was a native Alabamian (Montgomery-born), who, like so many complicated literary souls, made his way to New Orleans to better commune with his muse. While there he taught for a few years at Xavier University and the University of New Orleans, hung out at Uptown’s Maple Leaf Bar (where he founded a reading series that is still going strong) and gradually descended into homelessness and alcoholism, all the while churning out verse on scraps of paper. He published two books of poetry during his lifetime, as well as dozens of individual poems in newspapers (including Mobile’s old Azalea City News) and magazines, which helped secure him a devoted regional readership.

Now, a wonderful new volume collects a nice range of Maddox’s verse and presents it for a new generation of readers. “I hope it’s not over, and good-by” (UNO Press, paper, $16.95) edited by Ralph Adamo is as good a one-volume introduction to this compelling poet as one could wish for, and every lover of Gulf Coast literature will want a copy on his or her shelf.

In his brief introduction, Adamo, a Crescent City poet and journalist, explains that this volume “is intended as a showcase of his [Maddox’s] styles, concerns, his wit, and sometimes dazzling sensibility.” Clearly, Maddox’s devotion to his art, to the detriment of his health and, in the end, his very survival, will be difficult for most readers to fully fathom. But the intensity of his experience and his gift for communicating it come through very strongly in this book.

Several of the poems reference locales around the South — Birmingham, Montgomery and Mobile among them — but New Orleans is by far the dominant presence, and it is beautifully evoked time and again. In “2900 Prytania,” named for Maddox’s first New Orleans address (pictured on the cover), he wrote: “These top few/ lines sagging/ with words/ like ennui/ lagniappe/ crème de menthe/ constitute/ the wrought-iron/ balcony/ of a poem/ shaped just like/ my new 120-/ year-old house/ in New Orleans:/ a wooden lime/ peel hanging/ out of a lightning-/ murdered tree/ 2 stories/ down to knock/ against/ a honeysuckle-/ scented neighborhood/ of weird readers.”

In “New Orleans,” the city’s watery nature is to the fore: “From the air it’s all puddles:/ a blue-green frog town/ on lily pads. More canals than Amsterdam. You don’t/ land — you sink.” It concludes, “I’ll never write another line/ for anything but love/ in this city where steam/ rises off the street after/ a rain like bosoms heaving.” And in “Front Street, New Orleans,” place and history intermingle: “… Only Governor/ Bernardo de Galvez who played/ ‘so decisive a role’ in the War/ for American Independence/ just off the ferry from Spain/ on his horse looks indecisively/ over my head up Canal Street/ as if to say Where can a man get/ a drink in this part of History”.

Getting a drink was certainly a significant concern for Maddox. In the introduction, Adamo writes that the poet was frequently “under the influence (from drink served in places that would not be mistaken for glamorous),” and poem after poem references alcohol and drunkenness. In “Urban Maudlin,” Maddox wrote: “Is it the accumulated/ effect of the screwdriver,/ bourbon on the rocks,/ Dixie beer and three brandies/ I’ve had today that/ has caused the first/ g to be torn from the/ Pi gly Wiggly sign across/ the street from this bar?” And in “Drinking Glass,” he composed a poem in praise of an empty glass: “Pick it up and hold it/ to the light — / a repository of dust,/ hair and lipstick.//” But, he continues, “Dump it out/ (salvaging the butt),/ rinse it, twirl it/ once on a cloth,/ and look! how Clarity/ Rides Again.// Raise it now in a toast/ to Friendship,/ and observe,/ deep in the amber booze,/ the old bright planets/ winking.”

If ultimately careless of his health and worldly prospects, Everette Maddox was fortunate indeed in the devotion of friends like Ralph Adamo, whose determination to share his extraordinary poetic voice will keep his memory and his work evergreen.

~  John Sledge