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Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Breakfast



As he scraped the remaining liquid yoke
from the center of his plate
he was reminded of Pasternak
how Stalin had crossed his name
off the list of those to be executed

Had he just executed the egg
that would have become
one of the greatest writers
of the 21th century
perhaps not
but there was always a chance
that at least one chicken
would make history beyond itself

The beep suddenly shook him
a reminder that the bacon
was in a shallow pan
in the oven
that it had completed its
timed purpose to brown
the porkish candy
he so relished that he
closed all the curtains
in his home fearing
neighbors awakened by the smell
would peer through the windows
knock on the doors
storm the kitchen
and the baby in the stroller
rolls down the steps
a mother silently screaming


Barry G Wick


Monday, February 8, 2016

The Unfinished Hurts


Birth with all its pain for the mother
is painful for the child

The pain of a child's first fall
is still with the child as it grows

A parent's separation and indifference
is still with the child as it grows

The first time a child is told “no”
remains with the child forever

The first love is a constant pain
when the love is squelched or lost

The loss of a friend for differences
is a pain that stays inside

The pain of an unfinished project
resulting in a lost improvement

Missing childhood for a parent's dream
is a pain that only grows stronger

Denying yourself the love of another
to please someone else is pain that grows

Reaching an age when there is no love
is a pain that grew when it wasn't noticed

Mistakes that remain unspoken
are crashed cymbals when praying

Rocks thrown in play hurt the same
as rocks thrown in anger with a lasting pain

The deepest scars are the ones we put
inside ourselves with our hands and words



Barry G. Wick




Friday, February 5, 2016

Through These Nights



Visions from last night
frighten the possibilities away
in this night
as sleep crawls into an orchestral blast
designed to keep someone awake
from a radio

Thumbs rub against each other
while fingers select something useless
to communicate to nobody

There were no knocks on the door
No mysterious lovers came to visit
from behind their veils
Many were imagined
here to pass hours whispering
while a lonely candle flickered

Secret longings were discovered
though none were written
or translated into foreign languages
just for the surprised look
on the faces of those going through
these papers

les désirs secrets les plus intimes
en nommant les images
qui traversent l'esprit
sur des pistes en acier
qui gardent ce grand désespoir
avancer de jour en jour”

(“the most intimate secret desires
naming images
that cross the mind
on steel tracks
that keep this great despair
advancing day by day”)



There
this is the connection
between two
who don't exist

Only one is here
to find something to pick
from teeth after a meal
made from unfinished projects
empty bottles of medicine
and a canyon of quiet
in a small house
with no echo


Barry G. Wick

(The French quotation is not a quotation from any French poetic source. It is a translation of the following stanza using Google Translate. It is designed to make this poet seem multilingual, intellectual, and academic despite four years of French.)









Thursday, January 28, 2016

The Changing of the Dreams


With pride in each move
the dreams from the old world
march away from sleep

Each button shined until
it sparkles
with its invisible
mission to hold
the night together
While shoes are never seen
in these dreams
they are carefully prepared
mirrors of discovery

Each piece of leather gets
a coat of wax
still alive as if attached
to the steer from which it squirms

No animal is hurt in this dream
yet bits and pieces show
their contributions to this soldier
at attention whose efforts
make him a man
where no ceremony generally
exists to help men become men

Some feathers of flying birds
flap in unseen breezes
on top of ceremonial hats

Inflamed honors
for emboldened souls
change position for the crowd

Complete silence is demanded
with straight-back officer phantasms
pointing an index finger
crossing the lips
from the first joint
direct to the tip of his nose
with the head tilted
eyes widened
in a discouraging rage
to whispers from spectators

Dreams change infrequently
which draws an audience
that stands night after night
to wait for the somber moments
complete with militaristic music
composed by pacifists

Always led by the flag
the guard notices
it is not a flag
but a flapping hand
waving good-bye
to the old guard
the old dreams
heading off the platform
to become awake



Barry G. Wick





Thursday, January 21, 2016

My Decision: A Simple Primer for my Adult Children and Grandchildren

    
A post recently seen has called one of our candidates for President of the United States a liar.  This post was directed at Mrs. Clinton.  I do hope Secretary Clinton is a very good liar.
This nation has a habit of electing liars because sometimes we just don't want to know the truth. The liar is elected because the liar has the experience to shade the truth about this awful world. In order to maintain our special American ignorance and our image as a toddler in a world full of adults, a good liar often makes the best President. When the United States has a thousand years of turmoil and confusion under its belt, having a liar as a leader will not be as necessary as it is now.
We've been privy to some of the dark secrets a President will keep from us. We've seen Secretary Clinton in a picture shocked at the happenings thousands of miles away in a Pakistani town full of American enemies.  Live video, audio, and photos of our military powers in action are secrets she has experienced first hand.
She's met more leaders of their nations than any other Secretary of State. The truth has crossed her desk.  Demands for this or that special attention by a foreign leader has widened her eyes in the special knowledge only our trusted national representative can appreciate.  Secrets we'll never know. Some of our soldiers die in battles about which we'll never hear.   Mistakes, too, get made in war.  Any leader has to be strong enough to take the heat.  Only someone who has felt the heat gets qualified to be hot again.  It's the nature of war that blame gets tossed in every direction and more often in just one.
The object of war is to bash your enemy until he says he's had enough.  Or until our side gets what it wants.  What we want is often privileged information.  It could be dollar fifty gas or something we'll never know.  War is confusing.  We need a leader who can choose the best people to assist in seeing through the confusing fog.  No Presidential decisions are made entirely alone or without advice, often from many corners.
My vote will be for Secretary Clinton in the Presidential contest.  It's not about anything other than the most difficult decisions a President must make:  the decision for military action.  Many will think a woman can't and shouldn't make those decisions.  The following histories will never be explained, considered, or understood by younger voters.  We have seen the history of Golda Meier in Israel and the United Kingdom's “Iron Lady” in during the Falkland's War.  I won't be afraid of Mrs. Clinton's decisions when it comes to the security of the United States just as these strong women led their nations.
Will we be lied to about details and about secrets?  Yes.  I'll of approve of it and never know of what I am approving.  It's the nature of accepting a person's leadership.   We must follow with blinders covering part of the view we see.  It is the nature of being a citizen in this large and still young nation.  Yet, we know more than any other citizens have in past generations.  We have the Internet to thank for that.
Being an informed citizen is knowing when a lie is presented to you.  In every election there are many sides tugging at a citizen's vote, mostly from some emotional base of fear.  This election is no different.  Get your “bullshit” detector's out.  Mine have been running for some time.  I'm certain of my decision based upon what I've detected.
President Obama was criticized by right wing advocates for a few tears about victims of a school shooting and perhaps many more victims beyond that.  I want to vote for Hillary Rodham Clinton for President because I think she can take the father who yells at her from a crowd about how she sent his son to die in a somewhere hellhole.  I think she'll be ushered back to her armored limousine thinking about that incident.  There is very likely to be a tear appear in a corner of her eye.  It's the same tear we all have when we can't do anything to make something better, in her case, to relieve the pain of that grief-driven father who can't see the people his son helped before a bullet found its mark.
This nation needs people in leadership who have scabs covering some of the emotions and experiences inside of them.  They aren't removable scabs.  They never fall off.  They protect the scab owner from getting infected.  So many of our Congressional leaders only try to infect their vocal followers with the lines created in some conservative think tank.  Once someone sits in the big chair of the Presidency, all of that jargon has to flow away in a great flood.  That person has to put their head above water in a hurry to save this nation from its enemies.  We have many enemies inside and outside.  She may be smart.  She may be tough.  I am certain she realizes that sitting in the Presidential chair the words of the Constitution of the United States will blaze in neon across her dreams.

Barry G. Wick

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Fettered Democracy


We walk into the political meeting
certain we shall hear the future
certain that the trust we have
will be respected above all else

The rest of the world watches
as we lose our minds in minutia
the correct tie or poorly clipped hair
it is the first impression of democracy

Each of us climbs a mountain
as we step into the voting booth
some of us jump off the cliff
still others scratch away their warpaint

Each lever or X that's scratched
tells us that we are correct
yet when mistakes are made
we never call our decisions bad

Our brain is a dog on a leash
sniffing at the odors along a path
rabbit this way squirrel that
a phrase in the speech tugs the same


Barry G. Wick






Saturday, January 16, 2016

Effortless


(after the saxophone of Wayne Escoffery)


Up down scream focused
cold morning twigs bow
to an irreverent breeze
assists now a vibe
that springs through scales
where chords melt through
cold gas
brother stay on that note
up man up
dream sax
red turns yellow
from beat that never was
when beat was cool
now beat just sits
for those who appreciate
a soft pillow for thought
that drives old brass
from new lips
you reed to me sir
from the book of vibration



Barry G. Wick