SAMPLER 1: LINGERING AMONGST THE MYTHOLOGY OF A LONG REMEMBERED SMILE...
“LINGERING AMONGST THE MYTHOLOGYOF A LONG REMEMBERED SMILE…” EMIL WEST WWWG PRODUCTIONS LTD 2012
Kono Hana o Miya has the smell of an evil and untimely death conspired, compelled and as on that bright August morning; we are treated to the murmured cries of the lost souls, the sadly departed and those long forgotten .Kono Hano o Miya means to look at the flower and to see the untraditional DeStijl‐like patterns and rhymes. Some may feel that the nature of this volume steps backwards into the introverted seclusion that I would argue had never been further removed than a step backwards… ‐ Emil West 2012
“Flowers of Edo” The sky was serene In sight of the inland sea “YOUNG BABY CRY NOT…” Then a flash of light Young Baby Cry Not Screams shatter my broken heart Sitting lost in childhood games The Lotus withers in death. Amongst brick rubble Strangers at my home Repeating the rhymed Koan Weepers fill the empty streets Slender Stamen bent under… Death stalks after me Young Baby Cry Not My echoes run in silence Images in a Dark Shadow Hibakusha in shadows Staring out at him My steps now seem slow Dotting Surrounding brick walls Sleepwalking in nightmare Dancing around in hand dreams Young Baby Cry Not A blind girl asks “raison d’etre” Swinging, thrown in and about Miyajima, I am now! Holding Charred Hands Up into surreal skies Stamen clinched in his hands…
“GRIS‐GRIS”Standing up CrispGris‐Gris lain in the grassShudder, as we passVoodoo Chants, wild echoes in darkDizzy, Liquored grog dreams.Working girl’s grisetteNot in fine “gros de londres”Foolish Miss DeirdreDiluted dreams lost in groansFaded rosebuds look on down.Wild Voodoo rived ritesSung out in Chantey rhyme schemesListless machetesGris‐Gris curse them who speakGrasshopper banisters smile.(Kono Hano o Miya 1982)“JIZO” Talking with the JIZO Jizo okagesama de Junshi at the dawn Saying “Shikat Aganai” Kono Hana o Miya…
“SATIN SHARI” Satin‐like Shari Wrapped around Draped over you Flowing downwards Gracing Lovely Ankles Stained in Sarin All Torn Apart From sarcous sarcomatosis Lifted out of sight Saved in spite Injected with norepinephrine Impending doom Waves come in crashing Satin‐like Shari Forever now apart.“WISH ME” Wish me a wide grinPour me more rice wineWish me a wide grinFor soon, the dawn will come,Sending the jaded Jael in,Draw the curtains wideAnd for the last time,Let the sun touch my cheeksWish me a wide grinPour me more rice wineWish me a wide grinFor now, my courage wanes,The warfarin was a good touch,This deed must soon be doneMy duty is clear, “ottamu”Young life, left incomplete.
GUIDE TO UNDERSTANDINGKono Hano o Miya = Look at the flowerJunshi = Ritual Suicide Nisei = A man without qualitiesMujo = ChangeKaze = WindNo Eiyu = Hero of the ….Shikat Aganai = (Slang) cannot be helpedJode Shin = True pure Land (Heaven)No = on, of…on the…of theUrameshiya = I bear a grudge againstOttamu = MourningAkirame = ResignationJizo = A Buddha Deity, a small statue found by the side of the road; throughout Japan to bless a traveler’s sojournOkagesama = Under the ShadowMondai = ProblemsShin Wa Yasashii Hito…Kongo Okitai Shiteita noni… “A sweet‐heartedperson whom…I expected much, in the future.”
“ANTIPHON OF SHOPHAR” Plukken by Plectrum Darvesh’s darsana at the gate.Shalow swonos of the Shophar Ptolemikos deifienApocrifa ascriben of Anointen into the KulturPsilocin breuen Brims Kolnedra siddurPtoma Ruschen to piptein Antiphon of AshadiaPyralis embracened Huschened apostasieFluidus mocion motet (Written with the original and/or Mid‐Eastern Word spellings…1982)
“Diablos und Diamon”Diablos und DiamonPromenade about my soulSwishing fichus tickleStepping over my headIn a fast moving half‐step.Diablos und DiamonWith the larceny of thimblerigThey swindled my soulTrapped me in this bottleA “Slough of Despond” exile.Diablos und DiamonFanfaronade worded fantasiesWhispered by fanged into lubberly,A luscious lues, in search of Lustrum. “Sometimes”Sometimes, I feel as if I were Fitzgerald; there at the bitter end, bound to bed but still in correspondents with his dearest Zelda…Sometimes, I’m bold…I am a Hemmingway character branded by my foolish pride, huddled all together with all those who share Hemmingway’s fear of the emptiness of the night‐time hours…Sometimes, I am left to my own devices and in need to create yet another adventure; out in the cold, wasted at small, seedy bar down by the harbour…Sometimes, I really don’t know who or what I have become; reflecting back upon all that I lost trying to be another writer’s character.
Towards my half‐hearted effort to explain what I just said; I would be less than truthful than to look you in the eye and try to repeat what I just wrote…As I write this down; there is no sense to this and thus no mysteries about the sea or to that point, me…nothing that you would ever need be concerned with; other than to say that once upon a time; I went to Phuket and there down on the beach…I reached the pinnacle of my legacy…down upon the wide strands of empty beach sands; I had a day dream…a Phuket Day Dream…long was it lost to time, age and the sheer living of a pointless life…the choices I made…the decisions towards this dream…framed my very being…blindly rejecting, turning away from options that might have “The Mystery in Me” served me far better than the path I The mystery of the sea has always so freely followed…to me that is the been…It has always drawn me to the real mystery. sea.There is no mistaking that the mystery of the sea is like the mystery of all the thoughts that hide deep in me.It may all seem funny, it may even come across as rather odd or strange; but, only if, you have never been…that you have never seen the wide expands of the empty beach sands.
“White Bottle Gin”White Bottled GinSlugged with a slight grinStanding by seasideActing as first mate and friend Left marooned with the MarinatesAs you swam out towards deep watersWaving out another final farewellAboard the boat of giant sailsWhite Bottle GinSlugged with a slight grinAway from the leeward islandAgain collar turnedStanding by the quarter‐deckThe last ten years fade awayCaptain, again, of a mighty riggerYour island home, memories locked awayA joke to be shared on a late, midnight watchWhite Bottle GinActing as first mate and friendLeft to his wits amongst the MarinatesWhite Bottle Gin Standing by seasideSlugged with a slight grin…
I leave you this message, a mad, a crazy, a bent poem about sea monsters and the many wishes to be This message that I wrote, was meant for you, for your eyes alone, that you might be able to make some sense of what you now read. After I completed and corrected the grammar for errors; it dawned upon me that this was foolish and I had in urgent expedience created a mad poem; an act of vandalism that most common viewers would have declared it to be. But, somehow I knew that, at first sight, you would see and then understand…you would discover the truths of love, longing and remorse. “Written for you and left Somehow, it seemed plausible at behind upon the walls of least at that moment that you would a long desert, beach front know in my miswritten rhymed, aged verbiage; that I had awaited your home” return, here to your old summer cottage, down by the lapping waves While I was awaiting you, there at of the Phuket Sea. your old summer cottage, down by the lapping waves of the Phuket Sea I waited for you with this mad crazy Waiting for such a long time while Phuket Day Dream about sea enjoying the thought that you might monsters and wishes that, be returning back soon Sadly, would never be While awaiting your return, I took it meant to be… upon myself, to scribble an urgent message up upon your walls
“A Stormy Night Down by the Phuket Sea” Late it was into a dark rainy night and we huddled about in comradeship at the old coffee house overlooking the wide sand beaches of the Phuket Sea Scanning out into the empty expansions of the storm dark fishermen’s family planned to sea; out to the clusters of mighty cook, remember how they lightning flashes that pebbled planned to roast a crab, as to the open sea; drinking a warm how we were joined by the Fanta Cola, the one coloured others who danced crazy in green, all collected, drawn to the harmony with the advancing , Voice of American conducting a dazzling display of lightning and play‐by‐play of a coup detre off as to how the fisherman’s wife in the distant capital; as we all looked up and took in all these expressed the burning desire of sights with a wide grin that made all arm‐chaired generals to join me feel at home.and rally the loyal forces that were ordered to assemble upon Late into the rainy night and the great plains of the Korat. most had returned back up to the school, I stood for a while Late into the rainy night and lost rethinking the day, enjoying the up into the excitement of a real whispering of the rain; and I revolution; did not fade watch a lonely, quite herd of memories of eating stale sweets, water buffalos roaming the of waiting inside a deserted empty beaches as if out for an beach shack for the sudden rain evening stole as I watched and to calm or the long walk down by tried to find my own “raison the water’s edge where the d’etre.”
“Days Grown Short” to squirrel away, horde, to hide‐ There was a (not so distant or a‐way; it now seems that an forgotten) age when a day would entire generation can slip by me last for what would now seems in what seems to be one short, to be a week, sometimes it could lost senior moment.linger for almost a season in the What has become of the waning twilight of a sun setting opportunity to linger, to drink in at almost nine in the evening, and absorb the wealth of the eastern standard time. single moment without falling These were times for all bold two weeks behind on some action plans, planning that could meaningless report generated well, that would without doubt out of cubed, cubical in which I span entire decades of time with now fear I might expire without supplementary plans to be having even the time to notice. committed and vast quantities of resources to be squandered, frittered away. There was a time when all that and more was the expectation of what would be done. The sights, sounds and lusty adventures that were left to be embarked upon as time had no meaning…no watches were needs and to those few we saw; we banished them out on to the outgoing tide.In this new, modern and bold age of time schedules, appointment and firm commitments to squander away what little time I have been able
that it would come rushing back to me as I stood in a patient stand waiting the local water buffalo heard to finish their lunch. Even stranger to me was that without regards to who might be listening, I tried my best to carry a tune as I sang out as the water buffalos paraded past me, heading up the shore.. Standing there waiting, watching for them to pass; a little ditty call “Two is as Three Might Be” was the tune that I chose to sing out to them…it must have surely gave them pause to stop and listen…which now seems strange and I am somewhat loss “Two is as Three Might Be?” to justify why I now did it. Maybe you needed to be there I was standing down by the to truly to get a glimpse of its Phuket Sea, Standing down there many, hidden agendas…the waiting for them (a herd of secret and inner meanings of passing water buffalo) to pass; a insight that there might be lying little ditty call “Two is a Three there to observe… but, WAIT! Might Be” burst into my mind… Maybe on a second or third This little tune was a very little reflection, it was a good, a lucky know garage band number that I break that you were not there to had heard only once or twice have heard me singing “Two is as and it had been so many years Three Might Be” to a passing gone pass since I had even herd of innocent water buffalo.thought of it; I was surprised
Funny how such an abstract, lost never conspires against or tries moment can live on and still give to betray us… pause as to what was I really A Wish for the Pookha, which thinking and to remind me most would deem nice, although better, allow all of my newly the reasoned amongst us fear acquired, my recent addition of that it is only a myth, a passed my more mature senses; to re‐ on fable that was handed down enforce that I was really young to us by our ancient, distant once but, sadly, it does really fathers.illustrate the truth that even then…I had a terrible sense of A Wish for the Pookha, I say is what represented good music… real as you are to me and as I am to you; without a doubt my friends, deeply hidden, encoded in to our ancient one’s tale…there must be, there… is a means, a hidden methodology to allow us to call the Pookha forth to take us away. A wish for the Pookha, picture him as I do my friends…swaying far above us, looking down upon from on high, from his hidden spot, protected by the larger “A Wish for the Pookha” branches of his moss covered, A Wish for the Pookha to come Cyprus Tree Fort; swaying about and take us away from limb to branch and from Off into another time, off to branch to limb, endlessly lost in traveling into some far distant counting on his many fingers and lands. Off to a kind place where then extending to out to his it is always day, where the hour equaled numbers of toes…living is forever young and it dares to high amongst the leaves as in
such a manner I believe that is not so far removed from you and me, to all of us – as we are his dutied responsibility and must be of his greatest concern and that gives him constant displeasure. A Wish for the Pookha summoned up by the old men from the bar, down around the corner of thirty‐second and grand, standing out on the curb after a long night’s deliverance and drinking…as their night fades into morning’s twilight; “Special Decks of Forty” they face out to darkened trees, Special coloured decks of 40 whispering his name, calling out playing cards each, deeply loud…a wish for the Pookha to illustrated with a rich mixture of come and take them away… images taken directly they say from the gleaming eye of Lady Luck’s cunning and envisioned mythologies that it might, possibly take for someone to defeat her and the house. Gambling all night at a crowded table, cautiously awaiting upon the dealer turning the colours as early in this game, one quickly learns to be betting anything other than to be betting with the banker was sure folly against Lady Luck, unless you secretly
wished to leave the tables early, The Banker’s bet was lost, our poor and broken. collective fortune mixed with the spoils of the now angry grave Special coloured decks of 40 robbers was spent, transferred playing cards each, out in a to these two strangers who fell dusty, cantina bar, out on the out of the night and into our very ragged edge of all known friendly little cantina bar, but as civilization, playing amongst local the Klephts bought another grave robbers and archeologist round; even the grave robbers interns. warmed and temporal friendship With all hidden cards now formed, bought and paid for showing, face up upon the with the Klepht Brothers crowded table, In the corner of winnings of shinny Rhine Gold.my eye, the reflecting beams of the grave robber’s exposed knife blade could be seen glowing…blinding Lady Luck’s eye…make her turn away for just that split moment and as if guided by an inner, a deeper Kismet, the Klepht Revolutionary Brothers (who had come late to the game) proceeded to hold one after another, of what seemed to be, it seemed to be a never ending stream of wining hands…As death revels at the “Going My Way? I Heard Her shot. Say”Special coloured decks of 40 Going my way?” I heard her say; playing cards each…Colours Going your way? Well maybe I turned up wrong; something had said…My plans are not certain, I gone so terribly wrong truly have not given it that much
thought…But, I am certain; that Going my way? Is a long road to by your question that you have hold, to be able to march inland given it a lot was what I was after alighting our ships as they thinking to say. rested upon the shore is much easier said than done. Chortled Going your way? It was a funny choristers ride off ahead, thing for you to have said. It heralding our reckless, speeded seems now certain that you must advance of to some future time have formulated some kind of and the end of the road.plan and that is scary as I have no plan(s)…I have no vision nor Going your way? I say that we do care to look that far on; my focus need to put it up to a vote, form is upon the here, the now; to a coconscious, not to be future is too abstract…its tempted, not to lead a charge; frightfull and wrong to think too take some time to ponder it and much on… reflect upon the any real needs to share this road. Going my way? Well, Maybe, I said that is kind of a proposal, the forming of a committee, issues or a decision from some advisory board. I am afraid now to tell you; that it true, that I believe in faith instead of life being some big, corporate mandate. Going your way? What on earth was your plan, what was the reasoning…seems like all sense and judgment was banished, removed from the table before negotiations were resumed.
“Arose in the Blood” (Secrets of Omar 1982)Arose in the blood, endowed with distress, fugitive of the arts, sedition ran deep, passions lamented in a parlando manner, branded assassins, hashish asphyxiate, teaching arspoetica, draped in bengaline as spoken in prophesy.Arose in the blood, deserted by the faithful, dialogues of Dharma, raised, reduced to ash, despairing pillage of hope, revised in rhapsody, heralded as miraculous, proclaimed, invested with the eyes of the prophet, prophesy, at last, fulfilled in the holy name of Silvia.Arose in the blood, the gravity of such purity, spoken in silent tones, with its corrupted cowl, dark, foretelling, foretokened in carnal imagery.Arose in the blood, so the miracle was recalled, by illustrated illusions, dashed dawn unto the rocks, executed with emulated zeal, was the son of the prophet.
around me in a blinding flash…man, I think that is when I saw it waving out a final goodbye to me just as it was hitting third gear and busted out the school’s main lobby doors and soared down all of the triple rows of the school’s front step entrance…rather “Wasting Away While impressive…last that I saw of it Cruising the Halls” …it was quickly hailing a cab out Haunting, restless wasting away to the airport and where a as we cruise the halls during waiting one‐way ticket was its study hall way out of this looser old town.Strolling, running up and down Haunting, restless wasting away the emptied halls, pass rows of as we cruise the halls during deserted, empty lockers that study hallonce stored dreams and a wide Days fade ever so fast, like this assortment of dry goods; just wasted page in which you took marking time waiting for the bell time to read and that you are to ring. now discovering is like this part‐Wasting Away While Cruising the time gig of a life; without talent, Halls during study hall; all of my creativity is even a bigger bore so carefully saved up, collected than all the useless verbiage that and stored, talented skills had you can find here hiding any true started to wane, leaking out into lines, smudged sighs of greasy patterns of Rodrigue misunderstanding(s) and so, we Patterns and finally, it summons are merely reduced to haunting, up the will of its own and took a restless wasting away as we plan of action upon itself to cruise the halls during study hall shuddering zoom by me like my or being outrun by our own old 1948 Nash with a quick talent who beat us out of this old power upshifted roar, right loser town.
fishermen gather up their tools and cast their boats out into a long day at sea…there off in a corner was a deserted beach home; long past its claim as a home to a young, couple lost in a summer love; sadly I now recall that desert shack and I now, I can understand its loss and it seems so intertwined into my Phuket Day Dream. All through my stay; this deserted, summer home shack was center stage in my stay…looking out a stormy sky, a radio creakingly played the Voice of America while another Peace Corps Volunteer playing Al Stewart’s “On the Border;” there out of the corner of my eye was yet another young couple “Phuket Day Dream” making their way down to the beach and towards the shelter of Over 30 years ago, I sat on a this old, battered beach foggy, wide, sanded beach in a shack…Then I understood, I little beach town, early in the knew its reason for being…and morning…watching a buffalo at that very moment, I truly herd out for their morning understood the mad poem that walk…down from the school was scribbled, drawn in bold where I had been sent to teach letters on its walls, colouring its games and songs at an English halls with thoughts of sea Summer Camp…watching the monsters and a wish as to what was never to be.
“Ephors of Ephod” (Secrets of Omar 1982)The morning blistered with an early winter’s coldThe High Fayyum stood by the camp’s luring fireI dreaded even the slightest movement away from the warming ambers of summer’s warmthThe morning blister with an early winter’s cold The entire world laid deep with forboden snows and its icy mist that robbed even the bravest of courage and spunkThe morning blistered with an early winter’s cold The last of the summer’s ambers turned black and wasted as the fire’s warmth waned and the cold began to seep in forcing me to upturn my woolen collarThe morning blistered with an early winter’s coldThe high Fayyum seeks out the village’s Afain Orcale Shaman and Healer who had forewarned omens of the coming rescue (Continued)
“Ephors of Ephod” (Secrets of Omar 1982)(Continued) The morning blistered with an early winter’s coldScanning the horizons up from our military’s base camp along the quickly freezing banks of the great river that brings the murmur in the ranks that swept in and amongst the terror nerved, collective nightmare of the last barrier to the advancing Horde was about to be lost and with it the last line of our feeble defense. The morning blistered with an early winter’s coldThe Shaman lay crucified for the truths that he had foretold and to show his greater displeasure to such deviance, the High Fayyum had the archers dispatch him with an iron crossbow arrow that found the aged heart of the Shaman and then several more to ensure the message of the High Fayyum’s displeasure.The morning blistered with an early winter’s coldThe High Fayyum sees clearly, as do we, that all of the natural world is in revolt against our holy cause and has sent forth its own ghost army of ancient spirits, led by the swift horsemen of the blistering cold and that seems destine to prove the Shaman’s predictions of an evil age of darkness that we are powerless to stop.The morning blisters with an early winter’s coldAs its consuming might clearly and boldly conspires to favor our enemies that march now at the head of the great advancing army of the Mongol Horde Fear spondee served up on a golden spittoon taken from once warm homes we vacated in the dead of night, all along the frontiers, we now huddle for warmth along these freezing shores and dread what awaits as the morning blisters with an early winter’s cold. The High Fayyum quietly scans the horizon up from our military’s base camp.
than what I truly, that I am in reality. I can still feel the coolness of the midnight air in that lonely, Mexican bar out on the ragged edge of the tropic undergrowth in the Yucatan and I can still tell the tale with the passion, the heat of the moment of finding myself, as a young archeology student, in a bar full of Mayan Grave Robbers. “Memories Never Run I can still feel the heat of the Short” Sudanese Desert and the high (1987 Introduction) noon standard off with rebel troops while trying to escape A long time ago, I really made a over the border into the safety of smart choice and at a still young Chad.age; I set out to explore the While the list does extend far world that my aunt and uncle beyond this page and that does had spent their entire life not include other adventures bookmarking and cataloging for that I still do not share; I now the adventures that they never have come to relish the retelling were able to realize or enjoy. of these tales as a badge that I Granted, I was land‐strummed have not frittered my whole life and shanghaied long before I away with nothing more to share was able to complete the tour than the bold, crazy store of the but never the less; it has left me “Great Copier Breakdown at the with more than my share of Office” in 1987.exciting adventures and scary tales to entertain and make me seem much more interesting
“Constantinople” eldest (a survivor of the worst that Cairo had to offer), who fell (From “Memories Never Run Short” 1987) sick on the first day that we I came to Constantinople back in arrived and promptly spoke of 1975 with two bags fully packed this as a form of punishment call with all of my worldly positions, “Salzmann’s Revenge” that was fleeing Assyrian Tugs that tried handled down to all sinners, to rob me at the airport; up into tourist and similar foul examples the once golden gates of the city of human kind as a punish from proper; I was relieved and again our Christian God for traveling in felt safe. the Arab World. I came to Constantinople seeking Soon the flu had overcome the a quick passage to Tehran and whole of the once great city, the the promise of a good job city was laid quiet, and no sound teaching job and the reprobation was made except for an of the city as a Party Town that occasional, sick waiter or porter preceded it in those days. at the hotel.I came to Constantinople and my This Flu was ghostly, it comes luck turned extremely bad unseen, waiting in the shadows having arrived in the city on the and its victims never see it face outbreak of flu – which seemed to face.more to be plague than a By the second week, the flu bell common cold. The sick soon fell rang no more, no one was left, all throughout the district were I none who were, dared not to call secured my standard, cheap out the sick…except for lodging, the death bells rang out, me…week now cries came from every side street myself…standing by the once and alley. golden gates watching for a taxi It seemed that none were spared to take me to the airport… not even me and the group that I had come to Constantinople with. One by one…we lost the