An Ode on Facebook

[Just Poems has just joined Twitter! To celebrate I post this poem about that other well-known social media site.]

You who enjoy the famed pastoral form
Might like this ode on Facebook, blue and warm.

Swift-dawning springtime field! Webpage, wake up!
Ads open in the screenlight, banners drop
Their soothing symbols onto thirsty eyes,
The keyboard chirps its song, the keen mouse flies.
All through the logged-in woodland bees of code
Buzz, hum and bumble with their data-load
And links like pixelated pollen spread,
Filling the air with stories to be read;
And fertile flocks of updates too take flight
On wings of whimsy, singing of delight
In this online demesne, ambrosia-sweet,
Where victory’s not diluted with defeat.

Sing, Site. What’s new? Achilles brave checks in:
“In Troy with Ares #forthewin”;
Crafty Odysseus, wand’ring near and far,
Stops for a craft beer at a hipster bar;
The urban muses raise their photo-herds—
A thousand pictures paint a million words;
Orpheus shares some blogger’s quote profound,
A cropped snapshot of nature the background;
This nymph you worked with once, but don’t know well,
Is pregnant and is showing off the swell.

Ah friends are they not grand, these selfie-ish feeds
That crown with glory’s garland sheepish deeds?
And can’t pitch-perfect profiles spurn the shade
And pipe forever on where no flowers fade?
Or are the cows for crueler climates meant?
What is it haunts this forest, Harvard-sent?
Do doubt, barbarian of foreign breed,
And thought, that exiled, poking, choking weed,
Rob us of depth as buckets drain a well
When they discard fair fashion like a shell?
Are storms foretold in CPU-fan wind?
What does the freezing of the page portend?
Ah stream of duck-loud nonsense, honey-thick,
Is it that life is ended in a click?

Old death goes viral in remotest glade
And cares not for nor spares your proud parade.

Anger at an Anthology

Fuck sake! Not more bloody death!—
            It clears the table, cuts the grass,
            Cleans the slate and seals the pass,
            Shears the shepherd and his lass,
And still it is not out of breath,
            But makes time for my sorry ass!

Song without Words

Before the end, the music’s pitch unpeaking, pianoing from forte,
I’d like to claim a moment for your face, curve of your chin,
The mole on pink sunset-sunned snow, reactionary cheeks, exploding lips,
Outward from heaven your eyes Luciferous descension,
Pulsing energetic visage of a god, fallen, into glory, godheaded angel,
Outward all beckoning inward, stellar attraction, spherical tones
Chiming within your skin, soft, soft now, soft

Pianoing from forte, down the sound and down and down
Your eyes and lips and cheeks and down and down
Your visage, night, night no longer star-full, only night
Come down upon you and darkening darkness to a pitch
Unseen, unheard, unseeable, unhearable, and bearable only because unbearable,
The loss of you

Charlotte Smith

Charlotte thought her life would be too long
And now she has been dead two-hundred years.
I linger on her words, like still-wet tears
Remaining though the eyes are dry, are gone
Into a place sans sight and sense,
A not-place that her longing never knew,
For though that longed-for peace she linked thereto,
There’s not a piece of it in nothingness,
No way to ease your head when it grows tense
Only with worms, stringing the skull from crack to crack
Where once electric currents ran amok—
And all to make you long for rest, no less.
Ah! if for peace and rest you have a thought,
A void should be avoided and not sought.