I Used To Loiter Endlessly

-excerpt from In Riparian Fields, 102 pages, $12.99, ebook $5.99->In Riparian Fields Ebook
https://www.amazon.com/Riparian-Fields-Dean-J-Baker/dp/1514660652

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‘Poetry that is classic and timeless.’

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Dean J. Baker - Poetry, and prose poems

I haven’t felt good forever
I’m not going to tell you about it
outside the realms of poetry
and the women
plus the rhythms of music, there
isn’t actually anyone who cares
to hear the sad dystopian tale
of an artistic loneliness since you
decided we share the same problem
but separately

not all of this could be known
not all of this could be known together
not any of this would be shown
by the solitary sharing
the fact that somewhere along
the way
a passenger fell off the train
beside the river I have not visited since
when I used to loiter endlessly
on the lookout for the arrival of beauty

© Dean Baker

-excerpt from In Riparian Fields, 102 pages, $12.99, ebook $5.99->In Riparian Fields Ebook

  • from a review:”Dean’s words ring true, even if they bite you. Might as well face the music he…

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Magazine Minds, Confectionary Lives and Cold Souls in Café Society

Dean J. Baker - Poetry, and prose poems

These are the days of holy rage; the nights, of broken thunder. The numberless
specific insanities that pull your mind right under. Total potentiality.
You know, don’t you? Who can’t gain weight, ain’t got no appetite yet bloats enthrall.
Vanishing invisibly, I can’t sleep at night and before evening’s day I am all awake.

Where drunks stumble and lurch; slur my daylight mind in ancient doorways, forever with us. Of course, it’s everyone except you. Fear being another tightrope.
So I shall disappear. The jewels of truth light my way through empty towns, streets.
There are no deals. I left everything behind that would not touch my sunken eyes. In this I am blind, the wounded thief.

Who would be the orphan and limping stepchild, ascribed with insulting logic? Hadn’t I assumed the debt that was once always my badge and refuge? I did not want these signs of genius…

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Phuque… from Petty Gods Of Apparent Decline

sample excerpt – all poems are unique in variety & scope – from forthcoming book, Petty Gods Of Apparent Decline, 120 pages, $17.99, ebook $9.99 – available for pre-order here

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©Dean Baker

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Dean J. Baker - Poetry, and prose poems

Fuck politics, news and our bullshit culture –
liars, thieves and one-trick ponies,
people dumb enough to rent space in their heads
to the corrupt in literature and academia

Congratulate themselves on disinterest, an
endless tribute to Helen Keller
wallowing in the logorrheic effluvia that passes
for praised independence never experienced

The whirlwind dust corporate
sway, plague of lust as such become
customary hope and prayer:
flag of the stupid few always for sale where

Power, greed and contrivance ever rule
amongst the egotist diviners of nothing new

©Dean Baker

  • sample excerpt – all poems are unique in variety & scope – from forthcoming book, Petty Gods Of Apparent Decline, 120 pages, $17.99, ebook $9.99 – available for pre-order here

    :https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07PZ4ZXGT?ref_=pe_3052080_276849420

  • ..the sum  +++ of all my other books – sine qua non ne plus ultra poema
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The Bull Calf by Irving Layton

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The thing could barely stand. Yet taken
from his mother and the barn smells
he still impressed with his pride,
with the promise of sovereignity in the way
his head moved to take us in.
The fierce sunlight tugging the maize from the ground
liked at his shapely flanks.
He was too young for all that pride.
I thought of the deposed Richard II.

“No money in bull calves,” Freeman had said.
The visiting clergyman rubbed the nostrils
now snuffing pathetically at the windless day.
“A pity,” he sighed.
My gaze slipped off his hat toward the empty sky
that circled over the black knot of men,
over us and the calf waiting for the first blow.

Struck,
the bull calf drew in his thin forelegs
as if gathering strength for a mad rush…
tottered…raised his darkening eyes to us,
and I saw we were at the far end
of his frightened look, growing smaller and smaller
till we were only the ponderous mallet
that flicked his bleeding ear
and pushed him over on his side, stiffly,
like a block of wood.

Below the hill’s crest
the river snuffled on the improvised beach.
We dug a deep pit and threw the dead calf into it.
It made a wet sound, a sepulchral gurgle,
as the warm sides bulged and flattened.
Settled, the bull calf lay as if asleep,
one foreleg over the other,
bereft of pride and so beautiful now,
without movement, perfectly still in the cool pit,
I turned away and wept.

©Irving Layton

The economy of language, the spirit of truth; sociology, philosophy: the distillation of experiences reflected, and altered, in one brief poem – that’s the magic of poetry, and a great poet.
Irving Layton is a poet everyone should read.

Irving Layton was nominated for the Nobel Prize in Literature, twice. He was friend and mentor to Leonard Cohen. Looked up to by Allen Ginsberg, Williams Carlos Williams, Margaret Atwood, and many other fine and great writers for decades.

Disclosure: Irving was my friend for decades. He once said of my early writing, ” Dean is a combination of thought and torment that has made him write more than a baker’s dozen of fine poems.. he might produce a collection that could astound us all.” 

my books http://www.amazon.com/Dean-J.-Baker/e/B00IC6PGQM

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Sweetness – by Stephen Dun

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Just when it has seemed I couldn’t bear
one more friend
waking with a tumor, one more maniac

with a perfect reason, often a sweetness
has come
and changed nothing in the world

except the way I stumbled through it,
for a while lost
in the ignorance of loving

someone or something, the world shrunk
to mouth-size,
hand-size, and never seeming small.

I acknowledge there is no sweetness
that doesn’t leave a stain,
no sweetness that’s ever sufficiently sweet ….

Tonight a friend called to say his lover
was killed in a car
he was driving. His voice was low

and guttural, he repeated what he needed
to repeat, and I repeated
the one or two words we have for such grief

until we were speaking only in tones.
Often a sweetness comes
as if on loan, stays just long enough

to make sense of what it means to be alive,
then returns to its dark
source. As for me, I don’t care

where it’s been, or what bitter road
it’s traveled
to come so far, to taste so good.
© 1989 by Stephen Dunn

Stephen Dunn, “Sweetness” from New and Selected Poems 1974-1994. Copyright © 1989 by Stephen Dunn.

A truly great poet – with  any number of fine books to choose from.

©DeanJBaker

 

Fishnet by Robert Lowell

 

 

 

 

Any clear thing that blinds us with surprise,
your wandering silences and bright trouvailles,
dolphin let loose to catch the flashing fish. . . .
saying too little, then too much.
Poets die adolescents, their beat embalms them,
The archetypal voices sing offkey;
the old actor cannot read his friends,
and nevertheless he reads himself aloud,
genius hums the auditorium dead.
The line must terminate.
Yet my heart rises, I know I’ve gladdened a lifetime
knotting, undoing a fishnet of tarred rope;
the net will hang on the wall when the fish are eaten,
nailed like illegible bronze on the futureless future.

©Robert Lowell

-excerpt from The Dolphin

Just read the first two lines and know that is not only about poetry but also about how
poetry in the world is recognizable, and the contrary is true: what isn’t poetry is known as well.

The brilliant use of metaphor matched with the physical aligning into discovery: how important poetry is when with only a few lines
endless senses of intellect, art, and personal renewal can be seen and pursued in a manner that the world itself would never allow, and thus must be and remain an object of delight and study,
because in that moment of poetry where the lines resound the reader is forever altered.

For those interested in literary trivia, ‘Dolphin’ is the nickname by which Lowell would often refer to his wife.

Fitting then that I came across this volume and others I relate to it such as For Lizzie And Harriet,   Day By Day and History among others of Lowell’s great works.

©Dean J. Baker

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