Map of Austin Poetry #302-4
Featured Poetry Supplement
Theme:  Feet

Upcoming themes:

#303-1 - Deep Blue Sea
#303-2 - Jacks or Better
#303-3 - My Favorite Martian
#303-4 - Daisy Daisy

Send poems to
stazja_at_aol.com in body of e mail, left justified. No
fancy fonts or colors, please. No attachments. On subject line, note
the issue number and theme. Include permission to publish and
attestation of authorship. Poets retain all rights.

This week's selections include:

1.  Cigar by Hiram Larew
2.  Standoff by Mariposa
3.  Complaints, Complaints by Michael Levy
4.  Night - After Frida Kahlo's painting, Naturaleza Vida by Rhonda
J. Nelson
5.  It's All In The Name - Part III by Barbara Youngblood Carr
6.  Feet by Ingeborg Carsten-Miller
7. Journeys by Arthur Seeley
8.  Feet by Jerry Silverberg
9.  O! EXTREMITIES beneath me by Thom the World Poet
10. Hey Hey Uncle Fudd by Jimmy Smith

1.  Cigar by Hiram Larew
 
Dedicated to Salem, West Virginia
 
It's clear to me now
Clear as eggs next to twine
Clear as six is to five -
I know exactly what he thought
Back then
At his age
Clear as close shaving
Because I have his feet
 
Moreover of late
Something from then keeps whispering to me
Like birds on a shoulder
It isn't him exactly
It couldn't be
But it's saying up close
To go further
 
I remember
Deep weeks at the faucet
Hay sacks in the back
And a hillside hardly belonging
But more than anything
There were my arms like string beans
That weren't good for much he surely thought
Except his future -
Something about me made him cough
 
If I do anything now
It's because he said so little -
The surest sign of strength
Is quiet
Coming up the steps
And looking at me. 

© 2004 Hiram Larew
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
2.  Standoff by Mariposa

Our tired feet find each other
under our cool sheets while we sleep.

Unaware that we have quarreled
they travel far from opposite sides
of our bed and clandestinely meet.

Like old friends
they reminisce, share secrets
all their own, remember
what brought them together long ago
and wait for us to wake and admonish
their illicit caress.

In the morning when we
stubbornly attempt to walk away,
they will resist.

They stand their ground
under the weight of our burdens.
Our feet will not allow us to depart.
Toes harbor no resentment.

© 2004 Mariposa
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
3.  Complaints, Complaints by Michael Levy
 
I know a lady
seventy five years old
who complains...
She gets a sore throat and itchy feet
after having multiple orgasms
five times a week
The doctor told her
to stop bragging.

© 2004 by Michael Levy
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
4.  Night
     After Frida Kahlo's painting, Naturaleza Vida by Rhonda J. Nelson

Since we die every moment
It is no sin to drop this facade
To confess, I am disintegration

My devouring glance
A ray of holy light the color of poison

My fingers grip my life
My fingers have their own intentions
Toes fall from my feet like acorns

Sift through these bones
Witness these artifacts

Time's wheel casts a shadow on the sundial
A flutter of leaves, then pelting rain
The atmosphere remains electric

Do not fear
You'll see me in cinematic incarnations

Frida The Illumination
Frida The Natural Disaster
Frida The Lottery of Love

The world can build an aviary in my defiled jungle
Erect a pharmacy from my flesh

Find me by lamplight in a railway car
Where it's always cocktail hour
I raise my crystal goblet

A tincture for pain
To my lips

© 2004 by Rhonda J. Nelson
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
5.  It's All In The Name - Part III by Barbara Youngblood Carr
 
The Podiatrist tells us we have
Plantar Faceitis,
Hammer Toes,
Bunions,
(Rhymes with Onions),
and
Corns.
Sounds like
A plantation owner
Picked the names
For the things
That go wrong
With our feet -
Don't it?
 
© 2001 Barbara Youngblood Carr
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
6.  Feet by Ingeborg Carsten-Miller
 
Forgive me - why
ever wanting to move,
ever ready to carry millions of thoughts away,
time and again and again and again ---  why?
 
Feet of mine - so wary of shoes -
even the slightest restriction,
even disregarding any weather condition,
tempt me to lose my mind's consideration.
 
Feel with me - they say
each pebble on the ground,
each even uneven swell of the mound,
timber - the splinter, concrete the crevice, water - my heaven!
 
Feel hights and lows,
eternal challenges,
eternal demands,
time and again
 
as
long
as your
senses work!
 
© 2004 Ingeborg Carsten-Miller
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
7. Journeys by Arthur Seeley

When I was salad green,
knee high to a bookcase,
long winter evenings I lay,
legs crooked, chin cupped,
folded in fancy
beside the great oven of our bakery,
thence, I'd circumnavigate
on the magic carpet of my Atlas and Gazette.

My fingers dared the Hindu Kush
where daylong shadows loomed
and echoes upon echoes flew

Across the walls of Ulan Bator
winds from the long plains
plucked at my padded tunic;
carried the distant thunder
of the great Khan's hordes,
marauding westwards.

I have heard the wolf gales
howl over Novaya Zemlya's shores
where cities of ice slide through silent seas
and the lone seal barks.

Astrakhan, Petra, Panama, Tiero del Fuego
slid under my fingers
where I roamed with the winds and currents

Mastless I've homed on Ithaca.

Tundra, steppe, pampas, prairie, desert,
equatorial forests dim - all were my domain
as winter beat its rain-run wings
against my windows. 

Later, I accepted more modest contours;
my imagination fettered, I was bound
by the proscriptions of reality;
my world coloured
an even and undemanding brown.

Fate winked,
since when, I've wound my way
twice round this planet home;

winged over reefs
and seas of unbelievable blues;
watched dolphins shepherd tuna for the kill,
beneath an umbrella of frigates
black against a murderous light;

seen flying fishes flitter and skim
as luminous wakes unfurled abaft;
watched petals fall on midnight forest pools.

All my oven-coddled dreams come true
and yet I have come home.

Home?
The peaty reek of sodden moors,
The wind off the tops a whetted blade,
rain horizontal, thick with sleet,
paths paddled to mud
under the curlew's lonely cry,
along the ragged outcrops of the scarp.

© 2004 Arthur Woods Seeley
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
8.  Feet by Jerry Silverberg

Quick, little, feet meet pleasure
life is a skip, hop and jump
time takes aim
at maturity like a target
to measure
yesterday against tomorrow
in a smile
wisdom files through an empty head
bled by lack of experience
to bounce with steps
found by worn sneakers
walking in another's for a mile.
Short grows tall,
pep needs no recharge,
the large climb problems wall
young ones - stall,
work is a mirage
of leisure time,
rhyme is a pleasure
quick, little, feet
skip, hop and jump
over life's hump.

© 2004 Jerry Silverberg
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
9.  O! EXTREMITIES beneath me by Thom the World Poet

You carry the weight of the two worlds-
Left brain,right brain,emotions-
in your twin archipelagos
You ,enclosed in animal skins
sweat like Osama in caves
ready to do the bidding
of some far distant brain..
You never complain!
Bunions arise when pedicures fail
Massages ,shaitsu relieve you
when weights are carried too far,too often
You are the body's twinned oxen
You the invisible pedestrian
You the jogger and walker's
essential instrument-without you
poetry does not have a leg to stand upon
(Check the feet in every line!)
Every one of them-doing time!
O feet! Eye love you!
You may be ugly
but you're mine!

© 2004 Thom the World Poet
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
10.  Hey Hey Uncle Fudd by Jimmy Smith
 
My feet should hate me
I mean, not just dislike me a little, or refuse to allow socks
to slide up to my friendly ankles.
I mean they should be plotting perpetual disorder to everything I
attempt to step on
 
ever.
 
My dad was a wino and he got some interesting
vegetation between his toes.
which since we were one room bachelors and I was eight years old,
naturally found it's way
to the nail at the end of the third toe on my left foot
and set up residence.
my other toes all moved to my right foot for a while, but eventually
were compelled by anatomy to move back left, although they never
spoke to my third toe again.
 
As it happened This fun guy only kept his garden right under the nail
and spent as much time as possible thinking of ways to drive and keep
me crazy with perpetuitch.
 
I came from a farm family and when I was nine they gave me an
auromatic twenty two rifle to amuse and delight the little animals
and birds that found themselves within a hundred feet or so of me
while I was strolling and murdering things.
 
One day I almost stepped on a rabbitt that had hidden in hopes of me
just missing him altogether and walking by,
so up he jumped,
and he was close
and not up to speed yet
and my itchy toe transmitted a message to my itchy trigger finger
that was so fast I shot the end off the third toe on my left foot.
 
You know that fungus never came back,
although after twenty years or so the end of that toe
did sort of return.
 
Perhaps I should have gone into cosmetic surgery.
 
© 2004  Jimmy Smith
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Grateful thanks to all who contributed their work.

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Much love,
Stazja