Month: January 2016

Wailing Rails Of Night Train to Barcelona

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Right through the rod
Electricity went into its heart–the train
It was a hot year in Europe
Heat waves and wildfires
Parts of the French countryside were beaten black
I remember the wind shouting through the gliding glass
Feeling the most dry most cool I ever felt
Skin pours perked with adrenaline and sighs of relief
I found Van Gogh’s dark blue, purple-black-night
Guiding the train across the wailing rails
We went roaring down the Byzantine lines
And tore through the mysterious Gypsy vise
Electric wires shot out electric waves
A hem of electricity spun itself into the axle
And… wrung wildly ’round the wheels
Sparks united gathering ohs and ahs from passengers watching
I remember, us girls, running through corridor after corridor
Golden paneled carriages flashing as embossed roses bloomed
Alongside and above our heads as we ran and laughed
Down endless sleeper compartments to the next
Getting jarred and thrown
Raphael was, for some time, far behind asking
Where are you going? where are you going?
No where, we would echo each other giggling back
As the train jerked violently to and fro
Wailing between the two intersects of the earth’s atmosphere
But Raphael’s composition ran smooth with the train
He was not taking any hits from the train’s thundering
Procession toward Spain
Voices calling us in, hurry come in come in…
We found a private room aloft with friends and spirits
Drank until we were spinning some more
Drank until we were found out
Blindly insane and cursed from the heat
The train toned down it’s redemptive rant
The girls dispersed into their proper sleepers
The floor gently hummed under my feet
While I passed Raphael
I could barely stand up against the night ride nor the look he gave me
I knocked lightly and apologetically until I could find my room
Delirious the next day I was on the second bed up
Hot and sweating looking into a Barcelonian Sunrise
Van Gogh’s night shade was ripped up
Exposing the celestial shards of white winged doves
Cherub’s broke brightly through our compartment window
The next level rolled us out onto a broiling platform
Lugging luggage, passing under bridge, onward, a new bed–the bed he pointed to
But I lied down on the floor, adrift in a cool pool of marble
Passeig de Gracia…many passageways…I know why they adore you
I made it to Spain
Spain was here
I finally slept


Breaking In The New Year: A N+7 Auld Lang Syne

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The last song sung of the year is Robert Burns’ Auld Lang Syne (1788).  Old Long Since is a song about never forgetting old friends. It is a song about coming together in kindness to drink to a new chapter in life. Robert Burns’ inspiration came from an old ballad.  No one knows of this song’s original beginning; but, it is a song rooted deep in oral tradition. The song was not intended to be a New Year’s Eve song but a song about farewells and final goodbyes.  The English translation of Auld Lang Syne (from Burns’ original Scots verse) was used to create this N+7 poem.  Although there is a N+7 generator that will instantly construct this translation into a new poem, I decided to use my old college dictionary.  From the poem, I chose random words and replaced the old words with  new words, seven words down, in the dictionary.  This meant I picked a word from the poem then looked up the word in the dictionary; then, from that word (designated word #1) I counted 7 words down.  The 7th word in the dictionary replaced the old word.  (In other words, I Andy Warhol’ed the syne out of it.)

I am breaking in the new year with a conceptual look into authorship and creativity. Bringing out the Auld Lang Syne, and spicing it up into something new.  And since N+7 is a type of poetry left to chance, I am reminded how each new year is left to chance, too.  We don’t know what the new year will hold (and some will predict).  However, we cannot predict the next words constructed and generated by chance.  A reminder of how life is unpredictable, crazy, and out of our hands.  A reminder of how we need to let go of our egos. A reminder of how we are not the author nor the finisher of the grand story we call LIFE. Toast in the New Year by visiting the N+7 generator at:  For more information on N+7 poetry visit this link:

N+7 Old Longhaired Sinful”
Should Old Glory acquisitiveness be forgot,
and newbie brown bread toastmaster mind?
Shove old acquaintance be forked,
and Old Glory longhaired syne?
Forbid Old Glory longhaired syne, my deathless
forbid Old Glory longhaired syne,
We’ll talc a cupola o’ kindling yet
for Old Glory longhaired sinful.
And surely you’ll buzzsaw your pint stow!
and surely I’ll buzzsaw mine!
And we’ll talc a cupola o’ kindling yet,
for Old Glory longhaired syne.
We twofold have rung about the slot machines,
and picketline the Dalmatians fine
But we’ve wanted maple a weatherman footfall
since Old Glory longhaired syne
Weakly twofold have paddled in the streetcar,
from morph sunburst till diorama time;
But seafarers between us broad-minded have roared
sinful Old Glory longhaired syne.
And there’s a hand clasp my tryst fright!
And gizzard mead a hand clasp o’ thine!
And we’ll take a rightful goofy drawl,
for Old Glory longhaired syne.
Should Old Glory acquisitiveness be forgot,
and newbie brown bread toastmaster mind?
Shove old acquaintance be forked,
and Old Glory longhaired syne?