Smoke and Mirrors

‘Make a dare’ – @anjkan




0. Riddles and Signs

“The man
Who has
No imagination
Has no wings.”
~Mohammed Ali

I. Lies

Your lying eyes
Bring me
Nothing
But Pain
Nothing
But Sadness
Have you 
Not Seen
My tears
Falling
Into
the Darkness

II. Going Nowhere

I’m on the road
Again…
My poetry
In the back
Wrapped
All in blue
Like an
Imitation
Christo
Still 
I wonder
Will I ever 
Find my way
Back 
To you?

III. Silver cords

There’s
That
Irony
Thing
Again
I see it
Reflected
In the water
Wrapped in
Cold Despair
Shaking
And Shivering
-Unable
To move-
Can you
See it too

IV. Blackness

Why
In my
Old age
Am I
Going
Blind
Again

V. Follow the Money

There’s a 
Healthy
Export trade
In souls
From London
To Hell
But like
In all trade
The Devil’s
In the Details

VI. Memento Mori

It’s taken
Years,
But it’s
Finally happened
The welcome mat
For Demons
In the non-city
Of Washington
Has been
Decisively
Hidden
From sight

VII. Spent Dreams

My Fortune says
That I am brave
And industrious
But now
That I’ve
Had my
Green Tea
And 
Moon cakes
I’m going
Back
To bed.

VIII. Twisting Shadows

Be brave!
You will
Triumph!
For at least
The moon
Isn’t
A straight
Place
Sewn
Into
Curving 
Space
Not 
This time
Anyway

IX. What to Do

Tomorrow
I am going
To be
Out the door
Working
For the Man
Working
Towards 
Death
Because really
What’s the
Alternative

X. Searching for Godot

Today Godot
Reminded me
That I
Always 
Sucked
At Dancing
So I asked
If we
Could 
Play…
Rock
Paper
Scissors
Instead

XI. Dark Places

The Demon Cat!
The Demon Cat!
It sucks
Your bones
It eats
Your fat

XII. Gri Gri

Silver Bullets
Only gets
The adults
And after 
Their bodies
Have died
We party
But then
The eggs
Hatch out
Full of
Horror
And it’s all
Got to be
Done 
Once
Again

XIII. That Song Again

For the
Love of God,
No one
Should be
Taught
To play
That song
Drink
That Wine
Or
Die
That way
In their
Dreams
Much less
In life

XIV. Imagine

I give
Sorrow-spiders
Confident Smiles
As I raise
My Shotgun
Full of
Bullets
Which I
Need
Aplenty…

XV bloody Death

They say
It’s not a
Monster
At all
That it’s
A man
Who 
Dresses up
Like a Bat
To, ah,
Prowl 
The city
Looking
For
Amusement

XVI. Smoke and Mirrors

I received
A postcard
From you
In London
Saying
‘I seem
To have
Gone mad
Brother
-I’m waiting 
For m
New 
Shadow-
Have you
Seen it?’

Yamabuki
Aug 2010

High Wire Act

Budapest Memoir  Ingénue 1 – @anjkan

0. The Fool

“Everyone has talent.
What is rare
is courage
to follow
the talent
to the dark place
where it leads.”
Erica Jong

I. Buzzing Brain

I’m full of dreams
Dreams of
love and hate,
Dreams of the past 
Dreams of Nepal and India
Dreams of Tibet and China
All of them Dying 
Here on my window sill.

II. Repeating Themes

I have Found 
Doppelgangers
Of vintage
Primitive 

Decadent 

Post modern
Capitalistic
Dresses that
I had reworked
And sold
To rich women
Who want to
Feel like
It’s 2002
All over
Again.

III. Exotic Colors 

Sir. 
Reporting in 
From the end of living
Here on Odin’s tree
And I have found 
This Wednesday’s
Full moon
Even odder
And more magnificent 
In the colors of madness

IV. Web Links

This spider’s web
Is an image
Of Indra’s net
Connecting
As she spins
The fabric
Of reality,
Which both
Sustains
And finishes
This fateful journey

V. Beijing Nights

The nicest day
I can ever remember
The burning towers
Soaked in blood
Then buying
My first blindfold
And going nuts
Walking sightless
In the golden
Afternoon light.

VI. Sensual Dreams

If I could have 
But one
Conspicuous
Indulgence…
It would 
Either be:
A Japanese
Zen Temple
Or a
Personal
Suicide machine

VII. Dog Days

I want to
Bottle
An Essence
Of flaming starshine
Mixed with
The cold darkness
From under the bed
Where the dogs hide

VIII. Spaghetti Spam

I spent
More than
Three hours
Making 
A new form of
Self deleting art
I hope
The other three pieces 
Which I have to do
Will take 
Less time

IX. Sky Pilot

I’m thinking about flying 
To Tibet
For two days
To attend
An important meeting
And my own
Sky burial

X. China Blues

The future’s
So dark
I gotta
Wear black
With burial white
Colored hats
And self mocking
Slippers

XI, Who Is He?

The way he
Punctuates 
The silence
Finds me
Where my
Heart lives
Shadowed
In stars

XII. End of the line

enough of play
enough of work
enough of art
enough of sex
enough of food
enough of drink
time for a nap

XIII. High wire act 

“The idea is
to write it
so that people
hear it
And it slides
through the brain
and goes
straight
to the heart.”
-Maya Angelou

Yamabuki
Aug 2010

Poetic Madness

 Here’s me as Gogo Yubari. – @anjkan

“The soul
is filled
throughout
with discord
and dissonance,
and so
its first need
is poetic
madness.”

~ Marsilio Ficino

I.

   Awesome dinner
at The Boiling Crab

   We ate so much
It made me sad

with you and gang
Just getting started

   We drank too much
And someone farted

    we muttered madly
of pain and strife

when crab eyed poems
Came to life

   Chaos reigned
And then went hazy

  We left the table
And went crazy

   The boiling crab
Came with the food

  and promptly told us
that we should move

II.

  I’ve heard it said
From the start

  That angels grace
is in our hearts

  That if they wanted
To be fair

  we’d have flowers
in our hair

  But instead
When we did part

  We lost our way
fell off the cart 

and all that we
Could do is stare

  and limp along
in sad despair 

  are you sure
That it was true

  ‘Cause we push buttons 
when we’re blue

  and some will know
that Shakespeare’s great

  And then there’s some
That come home late

III.

   I just spent
the last 3 hours
in the dark

   on my street..

electricity was down


  in the black night
I remembered 

   that you desire
to know the art of living,

   my friend
It is contained

in one phrase:

   make use
of suffering.

  [ -Henri
Frederic
Amiel (1821-1881)]

IV.

  I asked him why

(I could not cry) 

  he wouldn’t stop
following me.

(or invite me 
 to have some tea)

  He said
it was because

(in a beery buzz)

  of the things
I said

(hope he doesn’t
 want me dead)

  and the way
I moved

(don’t you know
 I’m in the groove)

 my hands
when I…

(don’t be shy)

  spoke [of]
dreams

V.


  Found
and twisted
tweets

  Oh those words
so sweet

  knocked me
off my feet

  Until
I couldn’t
stand it

  I never 
really
planned it

  it just came out
this way


yamabuki
Aug 2010

sly wink note:
part of Twitter
user agreement
allows other ppl
To use your words
This is necessary
to allow 
Retweets

Yet when i asked
to use your words
those of you 
that responded
(you know
 who you are)
all agreed
to my pleas

And look how i
have twisted 
your words
and added
my own
in poetic madness

yamabuki

Witches’ Signs

‘Senses’ by @anjkan

“Is time the wheel that turns, 
or the track it leaves behind?” 
— R. Hobb

What is this crack between the worlds
This space behind our sighs
That hidden place with no name
All our answers are but lies
Just ask the moonlight to explain

The tides of life come and go
Yet all we know is doubt
The point of change is its knife 
The breath of life flows in and out
Blowing through our candle life

What’s your name 
Before you’re born
Or after you have died
What’s the color of your soul
The secret of your eyes

When you start to lose your step
Unsure which way to go
Consult your dreams
For witches’ signs
Watch the dark eyed waters flow

The magic works in crazy ways
The moonlight hides the night
Dying moans distract our ears
From darker sounds beyond our sight
And fills the evening sea with tears

What sense is there 
In fool caught time
What road will bring us peace
The way of death is hazardous 
What other choice have we

Yamabuki
Aug 2010

A Chance to be Loved

‘Trapeze Barbie’ – @anjkan

Why Does China Throw away it’s Girls?

It’s true you know
Baby girls 
Thrown away
Aborted
Killed at birth
Dumped in the trash
Just Because
They are girls

And let’s not even speak
Of the suicide rate
Of women in China
Or the kidnapped women
Forced into marriages
Woman as commodity

Or look at online marriage sites
So many Chinese women
Want to marry foreigners
And leave China
For a better life
Where they stand a chance

A chance to be someone
A chance to be equal
A chance to be loved
Who would not want that?

And what of Chinese girls
Baby girls from orphanages 
Abandoned by families
Who wanted a baby boy
Because boys are better

Some of these orphan girls
Like Tai Dong Huai
Find adoptive parents
That give them a new home
In another country

Tai Dong Huai is thirteen
Or so she says
That’s her story
An orphan girl
Now half grown 
In her new home

Look at Tai Dong Huai
She knows the score
She knows the clichés
She knows her mother
Her mother’s not Barbi

Look at Tai Dong Huai
She knows she’s Chinese
That she doesn’t quite fit in
But she also knows
Who her “mom” is

Tai Dong Huai speaks first of
“My mom and me”
Using the possessive
And only later does she mention
The more abstracted
“The adoptive mom”

She may be Tai Dong Huai
But as Reid Mitchell 
Rightly points out
Tai Dong Huai is
A young American woman
Who was born in China

As an American
I am proud to have them
Tai Dong Huai
And all the others
China’s orphan girls
Living here in America

To them I say
This America
Is your home too
We love you
Maybe not always 
In the way you want
But we love you
Welcome Home

Yamabuki
Aug 2010

This was written
As a response to
Tai Dong Huai
Her short story
at the AsianCha 
Web site
And to the review 
by Reid Mitchell
Of the short story
by Tai Dong Huai

The Picture
‘Trapeze Barbie’ 
by @anjkan
Seems perfect
For this
Thanks Angela
For your amazing
Angel-icious pics

Remains of the day

‘Remains of the day’ – @anjkan

Many years ago,
Though it still feels
Like only yesterday,
My mother lay dying.
She lay in a hospital bed,
Lost in a sea
Of medical tests,
Tubes and medications.

Her husband,
My father,
Had died
Three months earlier.
Now she was dying too.

Each day
I spent hours and hours
Holding her hand,
Watching the doctors and nurses
Fighting off death.

After about a week of this
I sensed a change.
We were alone
Together.
She lay there
Suffering
And I asked her
If she wanted to go home.
Without hesitation
She said yes.

I asked her again
To be sure.
I said that I meant,
To her true home,
In the spirit world.
She knew what I meant.
Again she said,
She wanted to go home,
To her true home.

So I said ok
I would take care of it.
Naturally the doctors
Did not want
To let her leave.
But my brother
Backed me up.
We brought her home
To die in peace
In her own bed.

Yamabuki
May 2010

Your Shining Eyes

‘Archiporn Nostalgic III’ – @anjkan

1.
Water slices the earth 
Broken rocks groan 
Your eyes, your eyes 
Reflecting the moon 
Is there nothing left for us
2.
Fire lights the sky
Steaming clouds drift past
Between eye blinks
The world changes
Do you still remember me
3.
Nights so dark
Even the stars are hiding
The path we walk feels so cold
Yet your shining eyes
Brightly light our way
Yamabuki
May 2010