ICT specialist with management/ICT background and a wholly unrelated love of poetry. Kind of like a modern Novalis, if I may make so bold. I am very interested in reprising traditional forms of literature. However, I firmly believe there is nothing wrong with extolling Traditional Heroic virtues in art, and my work is not satirical but taut with existential sincerity. To live nobly in pursuit of honor, dying gloriously to leave an everlasting fame - these define the heroic life, and the urban underclass alone embody those values in the modern world. This is why I write about them in epic terms - truly, they are our Homeric heroes. Why should the State have a monopoly on violence? I am very interested in Traditionalist, anti-bourgeois thinkers like Ernst Juenger, Oswald Spengler, Julius Evola and Rene Guenon - men utterly at odds with contemporary civilization. I am also greatly interested in the aesthetic analyses of Martin Heidegger, who considered poetry to be the key to Being itself, and the poet a kind of seer. I like Homer, Anglo-Saxon poetry, Stephan George, Holderlein, Novalis, Josef von Eichendorf, Goethe, Longfellow, Chatterton, Coleridge, Wordsworth, Keats, Yeats, Ezra Pound and a little Philip Larkin. My poetic taste is conservative and Traditional, with little time for formless self-expression: Scorn the sort now growing up All out of shape from toe to top, Their unremembering hearts and heads The base-born products of base beds. The Drunken Bag-Lady's Arcadia - a collection of my poetry containing 'The Chaviad' and the Jazz Trilogy - can be had here: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Drunken-Bag-Ladys-Arcadia-Poems/dp/1985333562/ While Sir Phillip Sydney dedicated his 'Arcadia' to the Countess of Pembroke, I dedicate mine to a drunken bag-lady. Cremation Please, a collection containing '101 Uses for a Liberal Arts Degree' and 'Tangents', can be had here: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Cremation-Please-Poems-2013-2016/dp/1985346923/ Inspired by the Jimmy Savile case, this collection probes the darker side of human experience.
Game Come live with me, and be my love, For I am upper-middle class; I can provide the best for you Until your blooms of beauty pass; I will buy you a silver car Whose burnished bonnet blinds the sun, That prowls the road with leopard grace And never leaves a race unwon; You will not waste your youth in work, But steep those tender years in wine; You must not grow outworn by care Nor old and stooped, before your time; Since private healthcare shall be yours, These pretty pleasures long should prove - So take them while you’re young and still Can live with me, and be my love. Honestus All Rome demanded bold resolve From those about to die: One must consult with fortitude The Colosseum's cry He must not shun the stooping blade, But meet it with his strength And savor like a lover's kiss The coldness of its length, And in the cool release of death Should sink, with honor bless'd, - Like some contented traveler Reclining into rest. Shipwreck I’ve seen that bloody river, foam flecked, dark With horror in my troubled warehouse eyes And known the secret place where childhood dies Amidst the screaming slurge of clotted deeps In frantic terror, to be heard no more; But I beheld, not long ago, in sleep Beset by winter waves, yet quite secure Rolled berthless into raging midnight war Where exiled ghosts of vanished childhood weep, A crowded vessel mighty as the sea Of such a kind had not been seen before The boat set sail beneath a stormy sky Heavy with thick clouds, a frozen face It sought the vision of another place. A shower fraught with shadows blew us by And tossed the tresses of the waves to white; The rolling waters sighed no lullaby But gazing hopeful from the lookout’s height The countless vessels passing in the night; Until at last I saw a city rise, With countless shining wonders; bright as flame The crowd rushed out and lost themselves to sight, But no ship came again to native lands And so my life was left to pine, and die. I drifted through the changing phase. Why, why Could such a vessel, served by eager hands Be dragged from windward to a silent grave While mewing flocks of seabirds wheeled nearby? I stand upon the dock, too late in vain And watch the sinking sunlight blood the waves By rusting scaffolds at the edge of day; But never will that fateful ship return For she, returning homeward passed away. Agoraphobia (After Spenser) I stand half-blent upon these lofty walls And gaze across the world; wayting weare A welkin breeze touches the woxen leaves That crawl, fast-dight, over the stones below; Trinal stormcouds gather from the south; The snaggy wooded hills transmew dark green As sandstone, swept by stound and thrillant winds Throws sulleyn sky-dust over thrusting snubbes. The moat stormed by habilliment of ferns, Its watch of hardiment now forgotten: Then griesly fear hews grenning on the wind – The blood within my chest grows hartlesse chill – The fields afore a carpet far below, Unfolding far exanimate away They move into horizons ghostly pale And alchemed others lit by summer sun. A scruzed feeling like to lust-sick love With shend, eddying tides of vertigo Then makes me quav’ring think that I could fall Amate from off the suface of the world; Those surviewed, distant, bright and silver fields Beneath the suborned sun merge with the sky And randon I as they y-melt away Into the maugre cloudes, into the world, Into the perlous storm, into the rain That freshly argent now begins to fall. My feet are hazardize froze to the grass, My trembling hand is clutching at the rail, As unrecoyled I cling onto the world That I, like hills, and ruins in the grass Might never fall away into the sky From off my fraughten, whirling, heady height: And only more I fear the trussed storm Will strike me from the aer’s enlofted perch, That wyzled winds will grow and ever blow And, grinding at the castle with their teeth Must cast me off into their sweep, or down Far down and dreaming all the hurtlen way To smash myself forespent upon soft grass And rolling hills, among the grazing cows. Suburbia Years of silence Framed in tragic glass Unwanted children Rich in loveless gifts Urbane persuasion Masking boundless rage The gift of youth A husk in striving schools Sick bedroom secrets Cutting diamond-deep I pass the houses every day But seldom see a face What dark, suburban secrets hide Behind their faded lace? George and Lynn Never grieving Always laughing Never angry Walking on air Or in bed, glowing Seventies smart Without hang-ups, Happily childless Amply-leisured Always shining Never weeping Never growing old. Wall of Words Consider them, in all their serried prime, Swift portals to a forestry of worlds: Triassic coasts replete with creatures strange And Mayan temples lost in tropic green; Forgotten nations deep in buried time And future places somewhere yet to be. They call to me, these gateways on their shelves – Or worlds call through them to my silent ear. Common Sense Isn’t We’ve all been lied to. And such fools we were To value all these things: intelligence And culture, reasoned argument, hard work And towing lines and doing the right thing. Such trash, the lot of it; all utter nonsense, Defective and misplaced. What fools we were To listen to the lies, and aim our lives Towards a shadow’s dream. How deep the wound When now we see that commonsense was not. Keep it Real You’re not good-looking enough; Not stable enough emotionally; Not driven enough; too old; Plus, you’re songs are shit. Give it up. The Roads One: Alan Road A secret road that sparkles come the rain, That wears the years and seasons light but well; A slash of nature through suburban grey Where foxes shun the innocence of light: This is their run, their haunt, their hunting ground – Their Serengeti on the August nights. Old maps declare this road and still it runs In faded pleasance, rugged underfoot. Two: Green Lane A sudden swerve abruptly to the left Through tricky lights less often green than red. This lane is not so fair as some that go Across the Moor’s ascendant counter-sprawl – But still, it’s pretty good for half its length. A bit like Birmingham, the better parts, The places tarts and teachers choose to live. But as the road unfolds, its pattern shifts; - And now it’s Heaton Norris, not so nice With pregnant women pacing dirty prams And stunted youths with pallid, vicious eyes. Three: Earle Road Another secret road, but careful eyes Can probe its issues with a canny glance. Detached and stalwort, middle-middle class – A road of calm and quiet confidence. The pavements smooth, since no one ever runs; At best they briskly walk, more often stroll To common cars expectant by the curb. “I love this place,” the poet said or thought, His evening stroll a wisp of violet air. The Winners (In Praise of Sociopaths) The heads of countries, states and entities - The cool, relentless winners: Swiss discreet, yet goblins in the dark Of private rooms Guiltless, shining, sometimes beautiful - Drawing on their glib and easy charm To spin a web of golden strands Around their prey Welcome to my world, they say: Lose yourself and follow me. All so easy, painless as a sweet: Come taste my world and see Yet not my cellars hollow as the night Where no light ever comes, nor ever shall: A well sunk countless fathoms deep Beneath recall of day There rats with stinking fur Patrol the clammy runs, flicking Snake-thick tails, their chisels bared: My secret, inmost place Like angler fish they wait, - Their lanterns waving, waving; Can you see it, can you see the light? Forget yourself and see.
Contributor to the following anthologies: Looking Back / Looking Forward (Armistice Centenary 2018) Ekphrastic Towers (2019) Woven Transitions (2020) 8 Weeks of Lockdown (2020) 6 Weeks of Lockdown (2020) Transient Magic (2020)
All poems are copyright of the originating author. Permission must be obtained before using or performing others' poems.
Reality Shock (20/09/2020)
Washed Out to Sea (13/08/2019)
Hardened Poets (09/10/2018)
Cultivate Life (09/10/2018)
The Master - for Carlos Ezquerra, 1947-2018 (02/10/2018)
Cloth and Club (13/08/2018)
Five Sheets to the Wind (15/05/2018)
The Void is Cast (15/04/2018)
Missing Out (16/11/2017)
Mature Student (13/10/2016)
Blog link: https://www.writeoutloud.net/blogs/jfkeane
|Wk 46||1 event|
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Monday 09 November 2020
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