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Author: Bartleby



From the hag and hungry goblin
That into rags would rend ye,
The spirit who stands by the broke-backed man
In the Book of Books defend ye,
That of your five sound senses
You never be forsaken,
Nor wander from your heart unwound
Abroad to beg your bacon,
While I must sing, Any food, any feeding,
Feeding, drink, or clothing;
Come dame or maid, be not afraid,
Goodbye can injure nothing.

When your heart so bright would warm mine,
In grave hopes I did dissolve me.
And thus enraged, my dreams I mixed for thine.
If you chance the warden, bid ‘im call me:
I scratched them in the bed head —
‘twixt the buttocks and the siren.
Were not his knots that kept me
but lumpy wishes where I’d lie on.
Now found wrong I sing for food and for feeding,
Feed or drink or clothe one;
Come ghost or bod, be not afeared,
Farewells shall injure no-one.

Delirium’s a hole where some unravel
unaware and innocent of carriage.
But I rolled along the edges for to travel
to you in magical love and marriage.
I thought it well. I deemed it right
to explore what I felt in wanting you.
But quick it caught and held my belly tight
while whispering love — love we knew and would do.
What is the path that finds the deep wide way
beneath what’s clear-day said and done?
I thought faith’d bring me love, not astray.
I’m sorry. For what I sought and won
will never breathe nor ever mend.
Goodbye is all — our only, a broken end.

With a host of furious fancies
Whereof I am commander,
With a burning spear and a horse of air,
To the wilderness I wander.
By a knight of ghosts and shadows
I summoned am to tourney
Ten leagues beyond the wide world’s end:
Methinks it is no journey.
Yet will I sing, Any food, any feeding,
Feeding, drink, or clothing;
Come dame or maid, be not afraid,
Poor Tom will injure nothing.

You stupid boring braggart
It was into Goodbye that you slipped the dagger
that slashed friendship apart
you hurt a nice person for no good reason
in the squand’ring you broke your heart
I try you for contempt of love, the highest treason
And punish you to silence
in the cavern where speak the shadows
that comprise both day and night
So get you now and forever hence
Let some wiser other say what’s right

Middle Bedlam verses and a couple slight emendations to the first verse, and of course the final verse:
BW with AW, copyright AMW

you gotta help me

you gotta help me

we need Pure Love to overflow Susan and Esmeralda, and then blend into the mindless effervescence of magic within Anne, and then explode like an atom bomb through everyone and everything. And we need to see how the magic affects Samuel and the brothers Hector and Manchild and his band of dragon-freers, and the opposition here and there, and the dragons freed and the dragons flying in, and the mindless reanimated corpses, and the monsters reduced to tiny chirping critters, and the termite colony that showed up out of love for Manchild, and Manchild’s father and sister, and on and on through everyone, wider and wider reigning supreme without demand or edict, with only Love.

Do we dodge the real question?
When Pure Love wins the war and silences all crime,
then we don’t get to see what happens when Pure Love guides people through violent times.
But how does it?

you gotta help me
you just gotta
you just gotta

a cigarette

a cigarette

I need a cigarette so bad
What am I asking for?
Nothing much
Just to go back to Heidelberg at 21
when my body didn’t care what I did
and I was yet coasting on future triumphs
while escaping into smoky bars
and wanderwide cobblestone streets

Yes, let me go back there
And not just once
But over and over again
until I get it right
The first few times I’ll drink and smoke in the low-ceilinged basement bar
and then I’ll relax the dissipation and find somebody nice to hike over Die Alte Bruecke and up to the Heidelberger Schloss with
and then I’ll relax the longing and learn something, the kind of magical patterns I’ve always meant to understand, so as to make a mysticism out of science and an art out of scholasticism.
and then I’ll relax the learning and write something, the kind of something that sings without trying
and then I’ll
I dunno
but let’s forget the cigarette —
it’s clearly besides the point

stopping the evil

stopping the evil

I was gonna do that
Stop that Evil
Turn everything round
But then
something snapped
an axel, I think
Because we jolted suddenly
to one side
and into that tree
that didn’t move or give
But I’ve mixed things up again
The death of Albert Camus
with my never minding Truth=Beauty=Goodness=Justice
Another one of these mix-ups
So if the Evil would kindly
stop on its own
I’d much appreciate it
If the Evil would be a sport
and cool its nefarious jets
that’d go a long way
to making me feel Okay
about how things turned out



it hurts and I can’t deal
it bleeds through and I can’t staunch
it wins and I can’t argue
it hurts and I can’t say
it drives me into the dirt

who is to say?

there’s real problems
real fences that need mending
wars that tear life from limb
sins that break bones behind the panels
waters rising and fires colliding
children lost and parents dying
real problems

that’s why I must pull it together
because what’s real makes what I do look silly
still it’s what going on I guess will I will I
so well
any ideas?

my brother’s album

my brother’s album

Not everybody has a brother on Spotify
Not everyone can Spotify-search memories
Not everyone’s so lucky in this world

The world is closing in
I blame the Fates
You blame the Republicans
The evil is turning all the pages
I blame the laziness of the gods
You blame the Republicans

Jesus is getting old
It shows around his eyes
and at the corners of his mouth
Eternity used to be easy for Him

God is getting fat
You see it now in his face
and hear it when he talks
Beauty used to be breathless for Him

The Holy Ghost is going nuts
You hear it in Its speech
Especially in the Men’s Room —
which brings out the worst in everyone

The world is closing in
I blame myself
You blame yourselves
The evil is flooding in on all sides
I blame my greed and the break that splits me in half
You blame the children and that they don’t listen

Who’s on the hook for the wonderfully mild winter we had?
The sparrows are suspiciously chipper
The squirrels unaccountably eager
The bunnies uncannily frisky
Surely there’s a clue here or there

Death closes all but there must yet stand
some final note for bird and man to shout
The curtain falls quick but surely we’ve time
for one more flip tuck and land
oh god that we land this one well

Jesus God the Holy Ghost
These three abide, smoking in the hallways
cigs rolled up in their T-shirt sleeves
so pleased with themselves and their rich abundant youthful hair that will reign forever

Oh no oh no oh no
I think I got it wrong
Oh no oh no oh no
I think I broke the song
Oh no oh no oh now
I think I got it all wrong

no more

no more

I can’t do this anymore
No more
Please let me leave this behind
It doesn’t work

what is the sin
that marks and mars me?

I can’t do this anymore
No more
Please let me grow past this
It’s got no wings

what is the crime
that holds and harries me?

I can’t do this anymore
No more
Please let me live for real
like a body should

what is the break
that twists and turns me?

Best for everyone

Best for everyone

Long ago at the waters of the river wide
stayed a troll more fair than any alive
She danced all alone where the sand leans
ringed by tufts of bending grasses green

Long ago with his musket, knife, and bow
paddled a warrior the waters wide and slow
Seeking elk deer caribou — what the waters drew
And there he saw a troll that no one ever knew

Long ago in the magic wood where trolls prance
no human’s ever been, never seen how they twist in dance
She turned and smiled at the creature with face
and arms much like her own, but with body replaced
by a long curving tree gliding upon the water
It looked, but at her chest belly hips, not her

Long ago in the time of the giants the centaurs the elves
a troll man found a troll woman where the soft water melds
into the land hard and certain, beneath the sky clear and bright
He said I need this thing that is moving now within my sight

But how to help for real in this land where buzzards bank
and gyre down to peck your liver and give our God thanks?

Long ago a man sinned and a woman wore the blame
Long ago the cattle lolled while a bull ran the plains
Long ago a mystic prayed until he knew what was best
He won the secret formula and by God was blessed
Long ago the weather turned like a hawk on the wing
We asked for a Beauty we could together sing
Long ago

Author: BW
Editor: AW
Copyright: AMW

The minstrel’s song

The minstrel’s song

There was a minstrel man
loved a lady fair
Wrote his songs to tell an’
pledged much to the air.

There came a parting song
near the castle keep
Came out everything wrong
a broken bleating heap

Wander back to her smile
Tell her you love her
Go back a thousand miles
Don’t pull or shove her

Make your way alone
dusts and stones along
A soul without a home
You sang her a false song
Now you two cannot know
what was real, what just show

Wander back to her laughter
to a kingdom where you’ll never be
Go back past what came after
And sing songs that help you see.

I’m sorry
Fo how I said what I said
I wish I’d said it
that we might try
to speak, to hear,
to find, to know,
to discover together.

Author: Amble Whistletown
Editor: Bartleby Willard
Copyright: Andy Watson

God in an evil place

God in an evil place

God was in the killing fields.
God saw the blood running and the men falling.
God was in the concentration camp.
God saw the empty meanness and meaningful suffering.
God has never loved anyone more than anyone else.
God has always loved everyone infinitely.
God has never chosen anyone over anyone else.
God has always chosen everyone infinitely.
God has never cared for anyone more than anyone else.
God has always cared for everyone infinitely.
So how to explain this life?

With God on all sides, compassionating and love-lifting everyone always forever.
Infinite Mind/bodys tumble forward all chained together and interacting in accordance with mental and physical laws. But the spiritual shines within, through and beyond them, and it also interacts with our feeling/thinking/doing. This is the mystery within the motions, the wheel within the clay, the Light within the darkness, the gentle silence that commands with no violence no force no shove and no pull.

God in an evil place is the same as God in all places.
God in an evil place is infinite Love on all sides.
Why is it like this?
Why does God let us harm ourselves and one another?
Why does God let us lie about the most sacred things to ourselves and to others?
Why it it like this?
Human wisdom is limited by the ability of feelings/ideas/words&deeds to perceive, understand, and interpret the Love shining through everything — including each conscious moment.
We know in part, we love in part, we are in part.
Our task is to organize our feeling/thinking/acting better and better around the Love that is gentle with and kind to everyone, and to move with this Love in aware clear honest accurate competent compassionate joyful generous kind-delight.
Our wisdom is the wisdom of poetry, of pointing-towards rather than precisely-defining.
Our Goodness is the Goodness of poetry, of moving-with rather than definitively-answering.
Our love is the love of poetry, of constantly starting over from 0: of careful self-analysis and -revision: Pushing out from within, we reach again for the Love that gently kindly effectively embraces and uplifts everyone always forever.

What can we say?
Human lives are short.
Human wisdom is limited.
Human hearts are weak.
But human lives are long enough to listen well.
And human wisdom wise enough to try and try and try again for aware clear honest accurate competent compassionate creative loving-kind joyfully-sharing.
And human hearts strong enough to try and try and try again for the Love that Knows that and in what way it is True to say “We are all in this together always.”
This is Something Deeperism: The acknowledgement that it goes too far to say that we have it all figured out, but that it also goes too far to say that we have absolutely no clue about what direction we should move towards.

Now the buzzards
They circle
And the lions
They linger
And our feet and hands
They falter and fail
Now the sand
It cakes our eyes
and lines our mouths
Now our throats
they turn inside out
to bake
beneath the yellow sun
inside where blue sky
meets the granulated earth
we say
to our doubts
and our certainties
we say
to what we
cannot contain
but that
fills us
to overflowing

Authors: BW/AW
Editors: AW/BW
Copyright: AMW