Ygdrasil: A Journal of the Poetic Arts -- March 2002

YGDRASIL: A Journal of the Poetic Arts

March 2002

Editor: Klaus J. Gerken
Production Editor: Pedro Sena
European Editor: Moshe Benarroch
Contributing Editors: Martin Zurla; Rita Stilli; Michael Collings; Jack R. Wesdorp

ISSN 1480-6401



      Divorce by Jack R. Wesdorp


      What I Want
      Cleaning up out in the Garage
      Remembering You
      Charge of the Wheel
      Otis Gap-tooth
      When Father was a Sailor (my grandma speaks)
      Tainted Intentions
      The Tower at Night
      Concubine Dreams
      Mop Bucket
      Bitter Acrid Gall
      Faltering Wax
      He Kneels Down
      He Knows Aforehand
      She Visits Him
      Gallo and Dope
      Another Chance at It
      They Tell the Kids
      The False Cup
      The Faculty of Vision
      His Son Comes Home
      Letter from my Son
      Observance of the Vows


      What to tell your youngest kid who's caught in the middle…


                (for the love of women)
   About half the marriages fail these days; in my community band of fifty
   musicians it's more. I'm uncertain where to lay the cause for this; but
   I note that most of us hid from it and hung on way too long; I did that
   for thirteen years.  And though I did know, I wasn't ready when it
   happened.  And that damn near killed me.  In retrospect, there were many
   signs: We stopped talking about our true private feelings, we no longer
   planned for our mutual future, our interests diverged early on, we no
   longer fucked yet kept to the same double bed, we rarely touched,
   sometimes a hug was refused for no apparent reason, we separated our
   stuff, ownership of things became tense, we were too tired to care for
   the house, refuse accumulated, some of it rotted, we cooked less and ate
   out more, when we did cook it was a solitary endeavor, we sough others'
   advice but much too late, we spent very little time close together doing
   something simply for pleasure, we listened to different radio stations,
   many of our issues festered, we kept it from the kids; the list is in
   fact several pages long.  I tried to write it away from me by regarding
   it from different perspectives; many eyes, many voices throughout time,
   a few before time or outside of time.  So, for me it's an exorcism
   unloaded onto you all out there.  Maybe you'll recognize some of this;
   maybe you'll learn something.  I did.  I do so still.  "It ain't over
   till it's over " (C Stengel).
   Jack R. Wesdorp

Despair ~~~~~~~ I'll wait forever for you to find me The circle I've cast shimmers like black glass Here's the spindle thread that can unbind me Take it and wind it round our deathless bed Here are the scissors to sever our strand As the Fate commands if you will not stay Know this must be done by your killing hand For I shall not do what I cannot say
What I Want ~~~~~~~~~~~ Immortal life that's never the same twice interspersed with periods of home-stead. A girl who loves me and acts really nice who'll pass me the salt and help me break bread. Many kids, each one different, each one smart, with equal chance to make their dreams come true. The wit to play any music by heart and, every time, make it sound like it's new. A bucket to dip in the well of words to draw forth the best that children will read. To never be forced to resort to swords, to never be bought by envy or greed, and always give thee, my love, what you need.
Cleaning up out in the Garage ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ My djinn polished an old kerosene lamp. "Three it is," said she, "and now's the right time." "Cure my mom and dad. May our kids blossom. Let poet me and curly-haired you tramp throughout the universe in love, in rhyme, the best we can, eternal and awesome."
Remembering you the best way I can ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ I like you best in a shortie T-shirt and nothing else except your perfect skin, just my pretty curly haired princess flirt, a quick pussy, a touch of fire djinn, the means to make your boy rise up real fast though he's inclined to take his stroking slow, take half an hour, all of time, make it last, get with a good come on nirvana glow, get it on out in the woods and weather, on in a soft spring rain or summer squall, definitely get it off together, one candle flaring tall, getting it all, and that's enough to last me round this time, just some T-shirt stuff and you in your prime.
Charge of the Wheel ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ I lay awake for hours before sleep listening for the sound of your cart. Steel wheels!, bring them safely across the deeps to our common hearth and to my heart. Do you stay away too long, take care, I shall find another to love me. It takes two, or the garden grows bare, takes equal essence, of you, of me, takes both creativity and skill to build a home out of barren staves. And it takes the spark and womb and will to set an altar stone in its nave. Four wheels I charge on your brazen cart: Slip not, steer true, keep us not apart.
Otis Gap-tooth ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Forty years I've been a morgue attendant, and though my eyes are blind I've seen it all: his bill-fold with their photos, her pendant with his picture, some in rags, most naked, a few come in wearing full evening dress. In this basement ain't no way to fake it down here before god, and I don't impress; they all look equal to me in their pall. They're just parts, so many grams of steroids, stuff I store in a locked up icebox wall for the docs to collect their thyroid glands. Mostly it's I like to feel at their hands; of late I've noticed fewer wedding bands. I wonder what that means.
When father was a sailor ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Each time you sail away I die a bit, fearing that this time out you'll not be back. I am plagued by bad dreams for months, and sit in vigil waiting for word of your wrack. When they sight your ship's flag from Tower Height someone comes running to tell me, "He's home!" I walk to the front room, snuff out the light, let down my hair with your pearl handled comb. And when they call I'll put my hair back up, spend an endless breakfast time at your side, talk of future plans, refill your tea cup, never letting you know how much I'd cried. And that last front room goodbye from your bed… fare well ye women-all whom sailors wed.
Tainted Intentions ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ The house grew foul around us-no one cared, a peculiar blindness to trash went down. I walked about, my back stooped to the ground with that weight-now I'm blind, too, and white haired. That which we did here, what is it worth then, what happened to our creative passion? How come your quilting flew out of fashion; did you sing silent, I take up the pen? I think I'll walk forth, see how far I can, because I tire of cleaning up filth, and why do that if you can't see the tilth I give you, oh Shekinah, wife of man. Yes, a beach somewhere to wash out the dust of celibate lying and misspent trust.
The Tower at Night ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ You disgust me, your breath reeks, and you snore, you've forgotten what your boy's cock is for, apparently you'll eat yourself to death drowning in wet fat and struggling for breath. I'm sorry you don't love me and our sons; there's something twisted in your head that burns us all together, I'm not the right guy to fix it, and I don't understand why. Maybe you'll stitch it yourself, or not. All I know is, once I loved you a lot, our own candle burned very tall and bright, but it was you who said: "Snuff out the light." Thus you have. I hope you can find a match to switch us back on, and maybe unlatch the door you've jammed shut. I trust that's real clear because it's fucking goddamned dark in here.
No ~~ How come you don't wanta fuck me? You back-pedal from every pass, each time you duck away from me, slap my hand when I pat your ass like I got some kinda disease; and what's this Womens' Studies crap, you think this is some sort of tease or did you forget a guy's map? Tell me, what is it that I did, that what women do, back away? Or is it you'd rather be rid of me, you wanna make me pay for something, tell me what it is. You crazy in the head, that it? You had your tubes tied, that the biz, lost your clit, what the fuck is it? Tell me. Well?
Concubine Dreams ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ You said you'd buy me a concubine if we hit the lotto prize big-time. I think I'd like her to be Chinese, about twenty-six, eager to please, willing to walk the Great Wall with me, adept at ceremonial tea, a university degree head, one solid honey banger in bed, stick around till I buck the kickit, sounds like a plan-let's buy that ticket, and hope you and her get along good, everything up front and understood, like a tripod brother sisterhood, wouldn't that be a ride….
Divorce ~~~~~~~ It's hardest on the ones who stay home; they feel their abandonment the most. Yesterday's blown out, right now's undone, there ain't no hope, and the future's toast. They live with the thoughts of their passion all strangled together in the head; it's all forced to the front self-bashing, and the far-worst place is the bedroom. Myself, I had trouble eating food; I was dying of slow starvation; bent out of shape; thoroughly unhinged interspersed with morbid elation; the sickest I've ever been life-long: No wife, no family, no soul, no song.
Fire ~~~~ I found where the fire would have started behind our sons' computers in the hall. Had it burned we should have surely parted and Russell would have got nothing at all. It was a rat's nest of tinder and spark packed round with crumpled paper and kleenex, broken pictures, photographs, and discards; it would have made a spectacular wreck. I unplugged all that shit and cleaned it up, made several bonfires in the yard. My dear, we had too much stuff in our cup, much of it grown corrupt and ignore-scarred. Everything I've been busting my ass for burned by ten years' indolence come to pass, turned to dust in that dingy corridor crammed with packrat grunge. Sand in our hourglass.
Mop Bucket ~~~~~~~~~~ I guess what pisses me off the most is sticking me with our aftermath, taking out our kids' measuring post, taking out our mosaic tree bath, taking out and burning a great pile of highly inflammable debris. You've developed considerable guile, force of will, scholar ability, also a cold, callous, centered set which I nowadays mistrust a bit, all that credit card bankruptcy debt and nothing of coin to show for it. Oh yeah, the Christmas feeding frenzy with presents used once and discarded, me in your dad's den switching TV, each others' beliefs unregarded. And last, you backing away from me in bed, that's the hardest that hit me in the head, so's I can't eat-got that?
Unraveling ~~~~~~~~~~ I've been on my knees fingering each piece of broken flotsam from our household wreck. I grubbed twenty years of old dirt and grease and stripped our bedroom floorboards to the deck. My question is: Can our ship float again, or is the best I have to offer naught; who am I working for, and what and when; should I fear that perhaps you can be bought? That would be fatal: No thing may usurp the flowering of love between two souls. Nor should the garden grow lax and corrupt where we planted the Tree of Marriage bole. I find myself cast on a lonely beach, and you, my dear, have grown far out of reach.
Bitter Acrid Gall ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ My wife and kids came to visit today; I got really sick when they drove away, a shaking shit fit on my knees dear god, I threw up puking yellow bile and blood. Of all the bitters in this world, divorce is the pit, believe me, there's none worse.
Faltering Wax ~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Dear Curls, what you did I can't forget, I can forgive but not ignore it. You, love, backed away from me in bed; that's when we lost our candle's rapport. I wound up jerking off on the sheets, a twelve year old cum stain that won't wash, that was celibate sex bitter sweet at best, while you retreated to trash and hysterical giggling when I tried you said, "I don't want to be prodded." When you turned me off, that's when it died. I lived with that for years and nodded, hoping you'd come back, keeping our flame alive alone-but you never came.
He kneels down ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ You could have warned me: "I'm gonna leave you, if you keep this up I'll be gone next week." I kinda doubt if I'd have believed you; dopers don't look too good at the backdrop, my lights were leaked out to pale monochrome, I'd just been ripped off for the greenhouse crop, and I was writing curse-them kill-them poems. I know nodding off on you was a smear and there's no pardon for that in your past, but was I truly that bad to you, dear, and is this price your final binding cast? May we not begin again? It's your call… dear god, let's not resort to blood and gall.
He Knows Aforehand ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ You thought it was dope at the Big Buffet when I stopped eating and stumbled away. It was foreknowledge that you'd be leaving; I wasn't hungry cause I was grieving. You can believe that or not as you choose; already lost you, I've no more to lose.
She visits Him ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ There's really only one place to sit: on either side of the candle trunk. It's set with two wax flames on it, one's for you, my dear, one's for this monk. Each to represent a soul alive abroad in our universe of change, to partner with each other and wive, cast forth out of potential and strange. If you don't want these candles lit yet look into our mirror on the wall, and think of the flame when we first met, where it was and how, when it grew tall. That was all that was real, remember, the finest oracle I've yet seen, and I believe, though now we're embers, that we're still one flame; that's what it means. So, sit with me by this trunk and talk of all the things we've done, and yet may, for we've a longer way to walk, yea, in the field of the gods where we play.
Gallo and Dope ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ I dreamed you showed up smashed at my place swinging a gallon of Gallo wine; I'm-all-cried-out carved deep in your face; we danced The Doorway in pantomime. I took all your clothes, hid your car keys, put you on a mattress belly down; when you threw up got down on my knees, got skin-to-skin slow till you came round. When the shaking sickness stopped we looked and talked it over what we had done, ate pearl tapioca I had cooked, decided to keep on what's begun. Gallo sits on the shelf with my dope; we never turned down that way again. We danced The Doorway: I have my hope that we won't falter. I don't know when that will be…
Another chance at It ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ You came out of rehab ready to storm my gate; I laid my courage down and asked you for a date. We had dinner; I cooked; and then we went to bed. I took your clothes off slow and you know where that led. In the dawn light we sat cummed out and feeling fine. I asked, Will you stay on? You said Yes, a long time. And now twenty-five years are fled before our star; I am amazed at this and how we've come so far. So I ask you again Will you accept my vow? Will you love me for real, and shall we do it now.
Accounting ~~~~~~~~~~ It's time to reckon up; it's been a year. My best advice to you is this, my dear: You got away free and clear; don't look back. There's another girl living here. Love, Jack.
They tell the Kids ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ What's there to do snow-bound in Poughkeepsie? We're in the hotel bar getting tipsy, dinner's a sub sandwich, but we're well fed, the room has one thank you god double bed. She takes a shower, I watch the river thinking of the gold and ring I'd give her. She comes on in a bare-ass towel shift; we kiss like horny hot kids, then just drift while our hands wander, I cup her bare breast and wonder if I'm up real for the rest; she whispers wild: I think it's stiff enough, wanna put it in me and spurt your stuff? She bends down and slippers me wet with spit and then we're both on fire fairly lit; I think we just made the foot of the bed and then all the stars of our lives were sped. It was the best damn date we ever had, and that's how we became your mom and dad.
The False Cup ~~~~~~~~~~~~~ We parents of the world are not as strong or magickal as we'd like to believe; we make bad mistakes that may last life-long and some blunders just can not be retrieved. That's a hard lesson, that you can't turn round even with your best intentions up front. Sometimes you can't see any further ground nor find the path no matter how you hunt. Or that pretty girl whom you just fucked fine, sometimes loving well brings in tainted wine.
The Faculty of Vision ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ You came over and stared into my eyes; I was willing and invited you in. Then I ignored what turned out to be lies; now I won't fight you for what we can't win. What we did will have to stand on its own, for I have seen its beginning and end. Our time is done, the past is cut in stone; now that you're gone you're not even my friend. I think I was lost at that first long look; it seems that sight is how time works its spell, for I'll never get back the time you took, nor can I reckon if we spent it well. Of all your form I can see your eyes best; don't look away, for I may take the rest, and you won't like that.
His son comes Home ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Yes, my hair's turned white, I've changed a whole lot of the sickness in my head that I got when your mom left me, an ocean of tears; none saw me cry out my loneliest fears; the hardest longest winter of my life was the one I wandered without my wife; but there's only so much grief room to roam; I came back, so did you, I'm glad you're home.
Letter from my Son ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Dad, mom's got a brain tumor killing her, could you come over to help her dying? I know she's sorry and that she's willing, and I heard her last night crying your name. We think she's still your only one true flame. I went over and laid my hand on her whom I'd loved half a century ago. We sang her truth and her praise and honor. I looked at her mind, where the life force flows, as a fertile field, and planted a rose. The cancer's left her, she lives a long life, and I stand stock still that she's still my wife.
Seconal ~~~~~~~ Finally my wife went absent, no mind attendant in her head, the truth: She was as good as dead, flown off, and I had lost my friend. For two years I spoon-fed her gruel without light of recognition, afraid of the superstitions that surround death, wiping off drool. Then one night her breath caught, she knelt right up in the bed next to me, lucid fair rigid, and hexed me, she said clear before god: "I've dealt us a bad spread all around, Guy. This is the slow death, and I can't stand it any more. By your hand, let it be by your hand I die. Do it quick and without trouble, I cannot do it myself now that I'm like this, I can't allow you to keep dragging my rubble. Put an end to it." The spark left, a hulk with slightly smiling lips. I wash her with my tears, it slips away quiet that dawn, the weft that we have stitched so long and well, caress her breast as her breath slows, fades into a murmur and goes off to some secret place, a bell, I remember a bell somewhere, I didn't count its tolling song, but I think there were six along the way she walked. And now I know that she will meet me when my time comes to do the same and die.
Observance of the Vows ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ We were one when the universe began. Now we're two and I think I understand what it means to loft a singular flame. I know the magick force in a name. Soon we two are one lightning again, struck to your heart the best way I can, that two-in-one converse with their soul, fuse our flames, and become again whole.


   Post Scriptum

   Dad, mom says it's your fault; is that true?
   Who can I believe; what should I do?
   Don't jump in the middle like you did;
   if you're feeling bad, don't keep it hid;
   no one is at fault, so never grieve;
   get away as soon as you can leave;
   make up your own mind, be true to that;
   work hard on your body, don't get fat;
   ask your older brothers what to do; 
   and always be sure that I love you.
   All Poems Copyright (c) 2002 Jack R. Wesdorp


A New Age: The Centipede Network Of Artists, Poets, & Writers
An Informational Journey Into A Creative Echonet [9310]
(C) CopyRight "I Write, Therefore, I Develop" By Paul Lauda

       Welcome to Newsgroup alt.centipede. Established 
       just for writers, poets, artists, and anyone who is creative. A 
       place for anyone to participate in, to share their poems, and 
       learn from all.  A place to share *your* dreams, and philosophies. 
       Even a chance to be published in a magazine.

       The original Centipede Network was created on May 16, 1993. 
       Created because there were no other networks dedicated to such 
       an audience, and with the help of Klaus Gerken, Centipede soon 
       started to grow, and become active on many world-wide Bulletin 
       Board Systems.

       We consider Centipede to be a Public Network; however, its a
       specialized network, dealing with any type of creative thinking.
       Therefore, that makes us something quite exotic, since most nets
       are very general and have various topics, not of interest to a
       writer--which is where Centipede steps in! No more fuss. A writer
       can now access, without phasing out any more conferences, since 
       the whole net pertains to the writer's interests. This means 
       that Centipede has all the active topics that any creative 
       user seeks. And if we don't, then one shall be created.

       Feel free to drop by and take a look at newsgroup alt.centipede

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  . REMEMBERY: EPYLLION IN ANAMNESIS (1996), poems by Michael R. Collings

  . DYNASTY (1968), Poems by Klaus J. Gerken
  . THE WIZARD EXPLODED SONGBOOK (1969), songs by KJ Gerken
  . STREETS (1971), Poems by Klaus J. Gerken
  . BLOODLETTING (1972) poems by Klaus J. Gerken
  . ACTS (1972) a novel by Klaus J. Gerken
  . RITES (1974), a novel by Klaus J. Gerken
  . FULL BLACK Q (1975), a poem by KJ Gerken
  . ONE NEW FLASH OF LIGHT (1976), a play by KJ Gerken
  . THE BLACKED-OUT MIRROR (1979), a poem by Klaus J. Gerken
  . JOURNEY (1981), a poem by Klaus J. Gerken
  . LADIES (1983), a poem by Klaus J. Gerken
  . FRAGMENTS OF A BRIEF ENCOUNTER (1984), poems by KJ Gerken
  . THE BREAKING OF DESIRE (1986), poems by KJ Gerken
  . FURTHER SONGS (1986), songs by KJ Gerken
  . POEMS OF DESTRUCTION (1988), poems by KJ Gerken
  . THE AFFLICTED (1991), a poem by KJ Gerken
  . DIAMOND DOGS (1992), poems by KJ Gerken
  . KILLING FIELD (1992), a poem by KJ Gerken
  . BARDO (1994-1995), a poem by Klaus J. Gerken
  . FURTHER EVIDENCES (1995-1996) Poems by Klaus J. Gerken
  . CALIBAN'S ESCAPE AND OTHER POEMS (1996), by Klaus J. Gerken 
  . CALIBAN'S DREAM (1996-1997), a poem by Klaus J. Gerken
  . THE LAST OLD MAN (1997), a novel by Klaus J. Gerken
  . WILL I EVER REMEMBER YOU? (1997), poems by Klaus J. Gerken
  . SONGS FOR THE LEGION (1998), song-poems by Klaus J. Gerken
  . REALITY OR DREAM? (1998), poems by Klaus J. Gerken
  . APRIL VIOLATIONS (1998), poems by Klaus J. Gerken
  . THE VOICE OF HUNGER (1998), a poem by Klaus J. Gerken

  . SHACKLED TO THE STONE, by Albrecht Haushofer - translated by JR Wesdorp

  . MZ-DMZ (1988), ramblings by Igal Koshevoy
  . DARK SIDE (1991), ramblings by Igal Koshevoy
  . STEEL REIGNS & STILL RAINS (1993), ramblings by Igal Koshevoy
  . BLATANT VANITY (1993), ramblings by Igal Koshevoy
  . ALIENATION OF AFFECTION (1993), ramblings by Igal Koshevoy
  . LIVING LIFE AT FACE VALUE (1993), ramblings by Igal Koshevoy
  . HATRED BLURRED (1993), ramblings by Igal Koshevoy
  . CHOKING ON THE ASHES OF A RUNAWAY (1993), ramblings by I. Koshevoy
  . BORROWED FEELINGS BUYING TIME (1993), ramblings by Igal Koshevoy
  . HARD ACT TO SWALLOW (1994), ramblings by Igal Koshevoy
  . HALL OF MIRRORS (1994), ramblings by Igal Koshevoy
  . ARTIFICIAL BUOYANCY (1994), ramblings by Igal Koshevoy

  . THE POETRY OF PEDRO SENA, poems by Pedro Sena
  . THE FILM REVIEWS, by Pedro Sena
  . THE SHORT STORIES, by Pedro Sena
  . INCANTATIONS, by Pedro Sena

  . POEMS (1970), poems by Franz Zorn

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  YGDRASIL: A Journal of the Poetic Arts - Copyright (c) 1993 - 2001 by 
  Klaus J. Gerken.

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