Thursday, October 16, 2014


image from archives


“A man should exchange bread for flowers of the narcissus,
because the bread feeds only the body, but the flower feeds
the soul.”--Muhammed.

Turn a window sill into a riot of blossoms, or
Tattoo a Paperwhite Narcissus, the bulb like a
Turnip, on the tender backside of your
Thigh, allowing this beautiful, hardy and
Tenacious tubor to become your organic
Totem, emulating the qualities of it, that I’m
Told will grow immediately, even without soil.

Glenn Buttkus

Posted over on dVerse Poets MTB

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Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Song of the Scribe

painting by brian simons.


“Some days there won’t be a song in your heart.
Sing anyway.”--Emory Austin.

You know anything that moves 
                               or emits noise
                               can be/is an instrument,  & I really dig
the perpetual music that surrounds us;
      the beats,
      the wailings,
      the chords, sharps, flats,
the slides, the octave shifts, the riffs, bellowing, braying,
      & sweet lullabies.

                                 Urban Rock

The heavy clank of gears, misaligned
                           or otherwise engaged,
the wet whoosh of steam venting,       hammering,
                                          exploding & crushing;
radial tires on rain-soaked pavement,
                       windshield wipers,
                                 defrosting fans,
                                            heaters radiating,
brakes & rats squealing,
damn doors slamming, solo, or in tandem,
call & response at dinnertime,
garbage truck piston-driven refuse compressing,
hard leather heels clacking,
                        children laughing on playgrounds,
                        stray cats growling & hissing & kung fu fighting,
                        women screaming, young boys yelling staccato
old fashioned metal garbage can lids banging, 
                                               man hole cover boulder ballads,
                        twenty dogs barking,
                        rivet & nail gun chattering,
table & hand & chain saw blades ripping,
lawn mowers coughing,
hedge clippers snipping,          church bells regaling,
                                                 though too often pre-recorded,
heavy horns honking, street light changes clicking,
                        power lines passionately pulsating,
                        rod iron gates squeaking on rusted hinges,
pigeons flapping ten thousand wings,
cooing like doves,
crapping like bats, busy fingers texting, computers whining,
Beatles ringtones,
gunfire & sirens. 

                        Rural Sonata

John Deere combines thrashing,
as the deep diesel throat chanting soars,
           horses hooves on barn floors,
           sheep shoulders rubbing wire fences,
a pitchfork stabbing hay, 
a two-handed scythe cutting off wheat stalks,
melons being thumped, 
                       oil being pumped,
                       apples being stroked, 
                       wasp nests being poked,
a farm forklift hefting bales,
cows kicking pails, loons laughing at sunset,
         a soft breeze across a small pond,
         amorous trees rubbing trunks together,
branches snapping, stags trampling thistles,
insects buzzing,
dragon flies hunting,          
                    wind symphonies in alder forests,
                    or whipping down steep canyons,
                    or capping peaks & citadels; 
rainbow leaves shimmering, shaking, dying, & falling,
                    leather chaps, saddles, bridles, 
                    jackets, straps, belts & latches
                    creaking seductively;
big tractor pistons popping while digging
                                           ditches or post holes;
birdsong in backyards & on barn beams,
owls in haylofts, black birds bickering over dead rabbits,
rolling raucous thunder in the distance
just before the terrible crackling
                  of chain lightning
as it strikes the hundred year old oak alone in the field,
splitting it in two, rain pelting
tin roofs, then rushing
out of downspouts as a torrent, 
various herbivore herds shuffling,
            horned heads butting
accompanying the dry lethal rattle of antler combat,
far off cougar cries
           that sound just like a baby wailing,
wolf’s sorrowful moon ballads, while
           coyotes & foxes yip
           & bad-assed badgers grunt
                                along with bumblebee wing throbs
                                & flocks of butterfly flutters
as the hawk romps the thermals,
screeing it’s joyful but determined challenge.

Glenn Buttkus

Posted over on dVerse Poets Poetics

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Thursday, October 9, 2014

Searching for Debbie

cowboy cubism borrowed from bing

Searching for Debbie

“I don’t believe in surrenders, nope. I still got my saber, &
I didn’t beat it into plowshares neither.” --John Wayne

Duke done wrong as right snake-bit fast,
heroic ignorance,
monuments all stone witness defensive carnage,
horses becoming carousel prancers,
forever circles Sufi twirling skirts demon-safe,
turbans--fucking scimitar bleeding Jayne Mansfield’s
headless tits bone buttons
drugstore starch snap pockets roll-your-owns
morning coffee white hat stains brass cartridges
bull rider buckles ray-bans broken rib bird cages,
sky weeping ghost riders with barbed wire smiles,
twin heads at both ends black & white hackamores 
as head dice, head lice, heads of rice, never nice roll
tumbleweed trash plays silver spur ballads only the
angry eyes showing murderous Syrian mask scarves
posting slaughterhouse rules bucket labels Christ’s
spikes complexity of conflicts gods wrestling
some with eight arms lightning bolts raining locusts
buried in hundred foot waves gone fishing
playing chess smoking Turkish cigarettes
on one lung cancer the shadow cancer the victor
golden chalice never claimed within
crusades that never end. 

Glenn Buttkus

Posted over on dVerse Poets Poetics

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Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Trinity Tales

image borrowed from bing

Trinity Tales

“Pessimism, distrust, & irony are the holy trinity of
my personal religion; irony in particular.”--Brando Skyhorse. 

I stood downtown
            in front of a department store window
                        that was being busily decorated
                        for Halloween;           ghosts,
                                              gnarly green giants;
            pumpkin princes,
            pirate’s parrots,
            pernicious pariahs,
            puzzling palindromes;
donut mushrooms, &
death defying ducks--              & I was barely aware
                       of the other people busily
                       crowding around me;                babbling,
                       buzzing, agitated, frightened, not seeing
the young woman lying on her back
                       on the pavement,
turning blue,
limbs twitching in
full seizure,
eyes rolled back,
with coffee-colored foam            covering red lips,
                        staining her yellow silk blouse. 

Leaving the Art theater
              with a female friend,
                        right after viewing a revival
                                         of Bergman’s PERSONA,
my arms sawing the air,
my excited words rising & falling
                  in the evening’s chill,
                  trying to explain, what I perceived as
                                              the psychological existential symbolism
within the classic Swedish film,
the commonly encountered nature
                       of those who are too easily
                       other-directed, & the too human
                                               need for some to follow (blindly)
                                               & others to lead (arrogantly),
carefully drawing a fascinating parallel
                       to the topical reality of young malcontents
                       being too easily recruited, trained, & turned
                                               into home-grown terrorists;
then suddenly
        finding our path blocked
        by two men in black hoodies, just as
I saw the muzzle of the Glock;
       We’ll be taking your wallets & watches, mother fuckers,
                        the shorter one said. 

For delicious decades,
we have lived in a house
                        rife with portals, humming
                        with metaphysical psychic meditative imagery,
and often, too often
                 according to my three daughters,
                 we all detect movement & presence
in our periphery--
          people & pets             who are not there,
                                             but were there
          for a few fleeting moments.

We call them the Visitors, and for the most part
         they have always been gregarious,
         as they stroll & slice through
                      several dimensional veils, even
         the ones who actually materialize
for a minute, or an elongated part of one,
visiting with us in plain sight.             My wife & I
         have always been receptive to
                      and in tune with
these visits;
& that’s made all the difference. 

Glenn Buttkus

Posted over on dVerse Poets Poetics

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Thursday, October 2, 2014

Penny Lane (N+7)

images borrowed from bing

Penny Lane  (N+7)

“Music, you know, true music, not just rock & roll,
chooses you.”--Lester Bangs.
Friend of Penny Lane from ALMOST FAMOUS. 

In Penny Lannert there is a barbicel showing phototolysis
of every header he’s had the pledge to have known,
and all the pepperbush that come & go,
stop to say hello.

On the cornflower is a banshee with a moulin,
the little chilopods laugh at him behind his backfield,
and the banshee never wears a macaw
in a rain-squall, very strange.

Penny Lannert is in my earldom & in my eye-glass,
there beneath the blue-blossom suburban skyscraper
I sit, and meanwhile back

In Penny Lannert there is a fireside with a house-fly
and in his podagra is a poser of the Query.
He likes to keep his fireboat clean,
it’s a clean mackinaw.

Penny Lannert is in my earldom & in my eye-glass,
a four-pence of fish-eye & Fink pieta
in sumpter, meanwhile back

behind the sheriff in the middle of the round-up
a pretty nutcracker is selling porches from a treasurer,
& though she feels she’s in a playground,
she is anyway.

In Penny Lannert the barbicel shaves another cuticle.
We see the banshee sitting waiting for a trim
& then the fireside rushes in
from the pouring rain-squall, very strange.

Penny Lannert is in my earldom & in my eye-glass,
there beneath the blue-blossom suburban skyscraper,
I sit, & meanwhile back
behind the sheriff in the middle of the round-up--
Penny Lannert. 

Glenn Buttkus

Posted over at dVerse Poets MTB

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Tuesday, September 30, 2014

The Fall of Heroes

Image borrowed from bing

The Fall of Heroes

“Name one hero who died happy!”--Madeline Miller.

Beller Ophon was a superb operative,
                      a lone wolf, a rogue mercenary,
                      a man with a triple brace of particular skills. 
He found it difficult to deal with authority figures
     so he always worked alone.

He made so much money
                              plying his trade around the globe, 
                                              that in the turn of the century
he could afford to purchase a Pegasus,
                              one of only three prototype
                              flying battle cars,                   outfitted with 
electric canons, bomb drops, & laser-guided missiles. 
                          He grew famous in espionage circles, after
vanquishing the Solyami Cartel
in Costa Rica, & defeating the dangerous
lesbian murder squads,                           the Amazons,
                                      in Mexico City.

These superhuman feats made him into the Go-To-Merc,
& brought him to the attention
of Zeus Petro, & its powerful CEO, 
Lon Bates---who was having a lot of trouble
                            with a new group of militant Islamic terrorists
                    who called themselves the Chimera;
           their black battle flags emblazoned with the mythical
creature; lion’s head, body of a goat, and tail of a serpent. 

The group of bullies & murderers,       hiding behind the mantle
                                of misconstrued Islamic prophesy,
were highjacking oil fields in western Syria,
                                 owned by Zeus Petro, which
provided the terrorists with the instant wealth
it needed to produce all kinds
                                            of videos & short propaganda films,
                that recruited malcontents from every ghetto
                                            on the globe, & these misguided
Jehadists would soon mushroom their ranks. 

Beller Ophon went into action immediately. 
               landing Pegasus on Middle Eastern highways,
               folding up its weapons
and simply driving right up to forty of their strongholds
               before making its instant battle transformation.
In one ferocious month he bravely tore the heart
out of Chimera, & its few
                          survivors fled, melting
                          back into the mountains.

When Beller arrived back at the headquarters
of Zeus Petro ready for his huge reward,
                         Lon Bates was not there to meet him;
for the CEO had decided to eliminate Beller
            rather than paying him--
            this was a very costly mistake.
                                     Beller slaughtered the 10 assassins
            who were there to meet him, 
and in the next two weeks killed a hundred more of them.
            Of course, Lon Bates changed his mind,
offering Ophon a king’s treasure,
& the hand of his youngest foxiest daughter, plus
the gift of Philonoe Vineyards in northern California.

For a few years,
          Beller actually settled down,
                             bought into his new role with verve
                                                & great passion, having several
                                                                           children, as  he
                                                 grew very wealthy & lazy.
                             but hubris is a demonic parasite
              for ex-heroes, & as his fame grew 
with the public at large, &
his interviews on CNN
pulled in big numbers of viewers,
              something in him snapped,
              & one bright morning he arose
                                  with that old fire in his loins;

he strapped on his old battle gear,
                    took the silver tarp off Pegasus.
                    & simply announced that he was going
                                    to fly to the White House
                                    & demand the recognition
                     that he felt had been denied him.

You are all aware of his plight,
the Secret Service brought Pegasus down
with twin weasel missiles,
               & even though Beller survived the crash,
               he was imprisoned & terribly tortured by
               the jack-booted SS, before
                                         he was stripped of all his wealth
                                         & his identity, & he was transported
in the dead of night to Detroit,
               where he was forced to live
as a homeless, penniless, crippled beggar
               on those mean & merciless streets.

He never tried to contact his family
or to visit them, for his shame was insurmountable.
                                           They say he died of exposure
one winter’s eve, wrapped in cardboard blankets,
next to an overflowing dumpster
               behind a Chuck E. Cheese pizza emporium.

One of his sons became the governor of California,
while another one died of AIDS;
one of his daughters became an actress,
but her chronic depression led her to suicide. 
His wife never remarried, 
but she did manage to launch
a designer line of clothes
at Wal Mart. 

Glenn Buttkus

Posted over at dVerse Poets Poetics
This poem is based on the Greek myth of Bellerophon & Pegasus. 

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