Monday, July 26, 2010

Muse and Anti-Muse (Melencolia)

The following is the sonnet I wrote for my Western Humanities I Final Project on the Renaissance. I had to display a Powerpoint on the Shakespearean sonnet, write and recite my own sonnet. 

My sonnet is inspired by the 1514 metal engraving "Melencolia 1" by German Renaissance artist Albrecht Durer. (see below)

Muse and Anti-Muse (Melencolia)

In the happy course of composing plots, 
full of daring deeds and mortal affairs.
A sudden chaos, then my mind is fraught:
Calliope! She leaves me unawares!
Imagination now an empty room;
the door therein stands frightfully ajar.
Souls who pursue the arts know well this gloom;
with Mind and Melencolia at war.
Melencolia violates the space,
that dearest Calliope once did fill;
And stirs me not with her Stygian face.
All inspiration she’s designed to kill.
    O Anti-Muse! turn yourself ‘round again,
    Leave by that door, and let my Muse back in!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Only Silence Remains

This poem of mine was published last month on "Soft Whispers." 

I am here...right here...
just a step or two away
with only the distance
of the aisle to separate us.
You are looking at cans of tuna fish,
I am contemplating vegetable soup.
You turn and look in my direction and I smile
but your eyes are blank and unfocused;
seeing right through me,
not seeing me at all,
as if I have become Invisible.
Again and again I observe this 
tragic ritual 
in American marketplaces
and city streets, where a
smile and a “Hello” are rare commodities
and sometimes more precious than gold.
We are a nation of Invisible People:
frightened of any confrontation
beyond our computer and cell phone screens.
How will we re-learn the Art
of spoken Communication 
once it is forever lost?
Will our public voices continue
to dwindle into nothingness
...until only silence remains?
(dedicated to Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel, who envisioned this long before I did, and wrote about it in “The Sound of Silence.” Poetry can be prophesy.)