Tuesday, June 28, 2011


4196 Precursors
sonnet for Andrei Guruianu

A four-tiered painting in Saqqara tomb
Showed variable composition style:
Tall jars in rows lend upright feeling while
Flat, laden plates diversify the room

With horizontals. Offerings that loom,
By bearer, butcher brought, the mind beguile;
The feast-provisions, each a gleaming pile,
Delight the eye; and dancers, lithe, illume,

In allegory, merit which the tongue
Will speak in lyric, sweetly to be sung
With vigor by musicians. To what end?

For tribute. I'm Egyptian, too. For me
The thing that can distinguish poetry
From madness will be this: to have a friend.

     --copyright by Martin Bidney 6/26/11

Friday, June 10, 2011

Sonnet for Steve Palmer

4131 Sonnet for Steve Palmer copyright by Martin Bidney [recited on the video]

ARIES (March 21-April 19). Instead of imagining or assuming what others see when they look at you, know for sure. Take a picture or videotape yourself. The results will help you project the image you want to project.

–-Press & Sun-Bulletin, June 7, 2011

Songs upon my psaltery
With the morning sun ray strove. . . .

          --J. W. von Goethe, “Past in Present,”
(poem 13 in West-East Divan, tr. MB
Albany: SUNY P, 2011)

Though I was born in Taurus, April twenty-first,
I like to check on neighbor Aries too and see
If there is profit, Nancy-Reagan-wise, for me
In guidance from a sign. The writer’s here immersed

In wisdom relevant to what I need to do.
Exactly what we’re planning! Have a video
Journal to give the world the image you would show,
With poetry, of course. On Thursday, thanks to you,

I’ll hearken to the starry wizard of the Press
And, like Apollo-god, Sun-Bulletin display
From whence a writer-light of high Olympus may

Not only me in recitation-frame portray
But send, with words, into the worried wilderness
A demonstration: psaltery and solar ray.