Saturday, July 24, 2010

Poetry in Hell

Poetry in Hell
Poetry in Hell is a web site dedicated to the poets, both in the Warsaw Ghetto and elsewhere whose poetry, under the leadership of Emanuel Ringelblum, was secretly collected by the members of the “Oneg Shabbat Society“, preserved and buried in the Warsaw Ghetto during the Nazi occupation.

How do you know when to use "who" or "whom" in a sentence?

How do you know when to use "who" or "whom" in a sentence?
if you can replace a word with "he" or "she," then it is the subject of the sentence and you should use "who." If you can replace the word with "him" or "her," use whom.
Example: Who or whom ate the cake.

He ate the cake........use who

Him ate the you would not use whom

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

One of the best books on writing I've read in the past couple of years.

If You Want to Write: A Book about Art, Independence and Spirit [Paperback]
by Brenda Ueland Get it at Amazon: Several used copies available.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Head Man

They scrubbed the heavy, white tiles on the counters
and the acre of white, linoleum floor.

They wiped down the long, steel tables with strong-smelling chemicals,
and polished them until the hard, overhead lights glared back at them.

They made ready for the boys and girls that would soon lie still and quiet in the room.

Far away, the head man took his hands from his hips,
hooked his thumbs in his belt
and pulled his pants up tight.

Moving his head slowly,
looking over his shoulder at his face in the antique mirror – which reflected the faces of other presidents - he chuckled, adjusted a few strands of hair on his forehead,the neat knot of his bright red tie,
and reflected on the brief phone call
that sent the effusive, gray bombers off to do their duty.

I Write Like

I Write Like: "- Sent using Google Toolbar"

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Finding the Right Stone - rev. 17 Jul

No, not the diamond for the engagement ring.
Not the perfect opal for the October birthday.
The stone had to be just the right size.
Palm sized. Not too big to kill.
Big enough to injure.

Azar’s husband tired of his wife’s drooping breasts
and the way she prepared the rice and hummus,
accused her of adultery.

Sentenced to stoning,
buried to her chest in soft earth
and told that if she could escape,
she would be set free.

A circle was drawn. The crowd gathered outside the circle,
chanting Allah hu Akbar”*, and threw the stones
at Azar’s head.

It didn’t look like it does in the movies.
Everything inside of her came out of every part of her.
Nine minutes later, she was
unconscious, and left in her hole to die.

Allah hu Akbar.

*God is great

The shortest story contest.

From a posting on Tribe.

Your story should include:
1) a queen as a character;
2) some reference to God
3) a little bit of sex
4) some mystery.

Seven sentences, maximum.

My entry.

Ann prayed to God that the enigmatic problem with her vibrator would be solved.


I watched the little, brown man
and the tall fellow this morning.
The little guy, pushed his model airplane
through the grass for one takeoff.
Just one, and then the crash.
The plane went back into the trunk of the car
and they left.

The older lady
speed walks
and pumps her arms
moving on the trail
through the grass.
She went in
circles for a minute for some variety
or was she fooling with me
because she thought I was watching?

The old guy made square corners
for a couple of laps
on the big, green lawn.
When he saw me, he made
a hearty, overhead wave,
a real down to earth,
howdy, sincere wave
and held it long enough for
me to smile and wave back.

It's gray outside but the
light near my head is bright and warm.


Sting Ray

It was a field trip to Bodega Bay.
The boys found a dead sting ray,
hauled it out on to the pier.
Examined it for a while.

Turning it over,
I took my knife and
plunged it into the silver-gray back
of the beautiful creature.
The knife went in easily.
Up to the hilt.
I was surprised at how effortless it was
It frightens me
forty years later.

Boys and young men do
foolish things.
Fascinated with guts and
Fearful at the same time.

Men at war are the same.

Shoot the kraut, the nips, gooks, rag-heads,
then run your
knife into his neck
or his belly
and see how easy it is
to the hilt.


Writing poetry ... the Self and tradition

Writing poetry ... the Self and tradition: "- Sent using Google Toolbar"
When one is compelled to reach for the pen, and to write lyrics and poetry, there are two distinct forces that gravitate toward each other to bring a poem into existence: the Self, and so-called tradition.

The Self is a colorful, complicated, and unique combination of all its desires, dislikes, experiences, likes, losses, memories, motivations, wants and victories … surely you get the idea.

The Self is YOU, and every big and little thing that makes you YOU.

Tradition on the other hand, is another colorful, complicated, and unique combination of all its cultures, expectations, histories, norms, mores, rules, societal influence … surely you get the idea.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Issuu - Groups / Poetry

Issuu - Groups / Poetry: "- Sent using Google Toolbar"
Poetry publications at ISSUU.

A new poem by Kushal Poddar

The Carpenter Ant Noon

The carpenter ants again;
building a home around a home,
inside a home,
eating a home,
slipping into one.
The carpenter ants again;
building a home around a home
while Sunday takes a lonely shape;
dancing tunes at twelve feature
the radio’s short and long
and I bravely laze
in the summer’s heat wave.

-By Kushal Poddar
Kolkata, India

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Overcast Sky

Today is one of those ordinary Saturdays.
Jazzbow and his wife are having a garage sale next door.
We talked a bit about our lavender plants, chatted about the weather,
the used radios, teapots, sleeping bags, the old clarinet and
the two, large boxes of stuffed animals.

His girls, now having reached the age
when they are hugging their husbands,
rather than stuffed rabbits and bears
when night comes.

Sample of my poem read by SpokenText.NET on line service; free

The poem:

Small Box

I looked for a box big enough for the bird.
Not too big. I was going to bury it in the garden.

Yesterday, a sparrow, disoriented by the reflection in my window,
Flew into it. Hard.
It fluttered on the step, wings beating, frantic,
too hurt to fly away.

I picked it up, held it in my palm,
as a tiny, red flower grew in its mouth.
Eyes blinked, then closed for the last time.
No one to blame.
Man has put things in the way
of animals, birds,
and each other
since he walked the earth.

TTS Online : Free Text to Speech Voices : Read The Words

TTS Online : Free Text to Speech Voices : Read The Words: "- Sent using Google Toolbar"

Monday, July 5, 2010


He shaved his neck
down to his chest
in the eighth grade.
He was cool.
The best slow dancer in high school.
He had the shiniest shoes
spit-shined with steel clips shaped like half-moons
fastened with copper rivets on the heels.
His Levi jeans draped just right,
tight, rolled cuffs, exactly a half inch over the heels.

He played football, and after the game at the dance,
his Saint Christopher medal tangled in his shiny, black chest hair
when he slow danced and dipped the big girls
we always gaped at because of their broad hips and long legs.

I ran into him years later
selling men’s shoes in a dark, narrow store
in the city, a 100 miles from our valley home.
I felt sorry for him.
My hero. The coolest guy in high school,
He was a man in the eighth grade,
shaving his neck
to his chest hair, with a pack
of Luckys in his t-shirt sleeve
and a new, leather jacket.