The Undertone: terza rima

Underneath the skin, a single notion
supports how life unfolds from start to end.
Beneath the bustle of the world’s commotion,

it floats in just a whisper on the wind.
In quiet moments, it can be detected,
first here, then there, and then it’s gone again.

This song speaks to the lonely and infected,
the disenfranchised and the left behind.
To listen is feel far less neglected,

to find relief to ease a troubled mind;
and in the falling darkness, light a candle
that saves the world from stumbling on, blind.

If you sit still and listen, you will hear
a music that transcends both hate and fear.

02 JUN 2017

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The Notion of Privacy: Spenserian sonnet

A private notion turns to public act
when it is witnessed by someone outside
your circle; once unloosed, it won’t come back.
These days, it quickly wends its way world-wide.

Your signal will of course be amplified;
within a moment’s span, your words extend
forever – an opinion, glorified
no matter whether real or let’s pretend.

A single line of text can make a friend,
or spawn a heartless legion filled with hate;
and no apology nor logic can defend
your thoughts, undo your speech. Too late,

expression, like an arrow through the air,
seeks out its target and is buried there.

02 JUN 2017

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Eclipse: Shakespearean (English) sonnet

There is no time to lose, soothsayers tell us;
Make hay! The sun will shine just for a while,
and once it’s gone, the world will turn to rust,
deprived of motive power, warmth, and style.

All things depend on endless solar power,
that radiating energy that fuels
the moments of our lives, the days and hours,
the actions of both conqueror and fool.

While artificial light may serve its purpose,
there is no life without organic heat
extending far beyond the simple surface
into the core, where being’s heart must beat.

Such darkness none on earth have ever known
like what will come when the sun’s fuse has blown.

1 JUN 2017

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Wake Up: sonetto rispetto

Wake up! The dawn is rapping at the shutters!
There is no time to lose, nor waste away;
you must begin to clear out all this clutter
that gives you an excuse to sleep all day.

Believe this: if the end is really coming,
you won’t hear marching feet or feel the drumming.
Defeat will slip in silent, like a thief.
Your struggle will be pointless and kept brief.

Remember that you asked for this convenience:
demanding automation of all things,
expecting everything be had for free.

Forgive the mindless drones; they know no lenience,
nor any song except the one they sing.
You know the words: we wrote them, you and me.

01 JUN 2017

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What Now?: Sicilian sonnet

What now? Is there sufficient cause for reaching
beyond the edge of darkness? Will we find
ourselves subjected to more endless preaching?
Are we fit students for any new teaching?

And what good any lesson merely bleaching
the past of any stains we’ve left behind,
or drowning out the crows and vultures screeching
on ancient battlefields we’ve tilled, or mined?

Out there, far past the edge of our remembrance,
is there a quiet place to stop and think,
not quite Valhalla or fabled Olympus

but just a stretch of nothing, where the dance
is still, and with just cool water there to drink,
we fade into a single, silent us?

31 MAY 2017

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One Cause Alone: envelope sonnet

One cause alone cannot sustain our reason.
Quite surely in one lifetime are enough
good reasons to press on; that is the stuff
of all our myths and legends, in their season.

Besides, one grows and passes out of childhood;
the dreams of youth must cede their place, as age
begins fresh chapters and with each new page
discovers strange and new forms of the good.

What good is life’s extension but for learning?
If nothing changes, why bother at all?
A candle’s wasted if only left burning
to chase away the shadows as they fall.
To change, evolve, is living’s constant yearning;
it cannot breathe if tethered in a stall.

31 MAY 2017

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Causes Worth Fighting: Petrarchan sonnet

We each must choose the causes worth our fighting
from a great myriad of pointless quests
designed to breed confusion in our breasts
and keep the fuse inside us from igniting.

The frivolous is made to seem exciting;
it titillates and leads our thoughts astray.
We lose momentum somewhere on the way,
and valor turns from acts to talk and writing.

And then, the courage fueling forward motion
begins to wane, reduced from flame to spark;
we stagnate, turned from blood and flesh to stone.
What starts as dedication and devotion
slips fast away from bright to cold and dark;
our coalition lost, we fade, alone.

31 MAY 2017

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