Saturday, October 31, 2015

earth note 368

a valley with empty hardwoods
lies ahead

the river moves
north then south

never forgetting
a contour as a map

requires no human interface

a red leaf
rises on the wind

--- e b bortz

Sunday, October 18, 2015

gangrene is the new antidote for the body politic

if the patients die
bury them quickly in unmarked graves
endless war is the new peace
when in doubt
     no signature required
     you've signed by default
     add military music
     turn in the slackers
when you find the cave
proceed cautiously
in the 14th year
or sometime thereafter
the rock crevice
will lead to light
but just in case
     let the drone go first

--- e b bortz

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

1968 pittsburgh

walking down
the steepest part
of buena vista street
slick with a thin film
from rain
she said we need to talk
at the broken city steps
     a map that had become
     an outline of my being
she said
you aren't serious yet
about your life
i need to move on
she said
with a quiet maturity
i guess i wasn't ready for

at nineteen
i felt as old
as the paris commune
thinking this pain
was just a part
of what the future
would lead to

there was still
a meeting to organize
a decision to make about a draft card
rent to pay
the haze below the city steps
reluctantly spread out
toward the rivers
as true and as unexpected
as this instant in time

the way forward from here
was about 4am getups
to make it to the laborers
daily hiring hall
the dirtiest & discarded jobs
     the prize
(i might still be paying for)

but from illusion
there can come
thousands of small steps
     & without a calendar or astronomy
new seasons
can barge right in
& transform
every living image
the only tool
to keep
a vision

--- e b bortz

Saturday, October 10, 2015

earth note 367

in between the last flood
and the drought
there was a glimmer
of a bumper crop
     of something
enough to fill
the silos of the one-percent
but not enough to meet
the hunger of four million refugees

there's no dilemma here
and it really doesn't take
a lot of words
     the corn gets picked
     the stalks are cut down
     with the precision
     of opulent machinery
every shareholder looks
like a quiet banker
carefully stepping through
the rows
so as not to jinx
the monday morning stock market

the true cost of food & oil
& the whole carbon family
& their genetically modified cousins
have been relegated
to a future
     someone else
splurge today
hoard tomorrow
repeat as necessary

the crows are at it again
never giving up
a mixed metaphor
squawking through the cemetery
like a sun
bright enough
to make shadows

--- e b bortz

Thursday, October 08, 2015

earth note 366

keep searching
for wildness
remember each tree is untamed
and a potential participant
     from a mountain
there is limitless solitude
if ready to listen

there are bodies & flora
willing to take a stand
without social relationship
all the theory in the universe
will not save us
from ourselves

the fog was damp
but lifted quickly
     this morning

--- e b bortz

Sunday, October 04, 2015

earth note 365

coming down
from the western rockies
onto the plains
of eastern colorado & kansas
is like a sunflower
making full bloom
& vast
on out
to the fragile edge
where the sky curves
with an arc
from every side
& a tree stands fast
for miles
on a solo stage 

--- e b bortz