Windows to the city

the streets
all seem in place
the buildings
stand with grace

the skyline
and the clouds
hover over
busy crowds

the people
walking by
more than plenty
catch my eye

the sound of sirens
echo dread
fetching the wounded
and the dead

the windows
to the city
make the ugly
look so pretty

Pity party

welcome
to my pity party
my endless sorrows
are nice and hearty

welcome
to my pity party
my blues
look colourful and are very arty

welcome
to my pity party
but please feel sorry
for poor me

today I may throw another
two
or maybe
even 3

Thanksgiving

thanks a lot
for stuffing me,
said the turkey
to the cook

I think
it gave me the shits tho,
am I now
of the hook?

Dead couples

walking side by side
like corpses that abide
abide by boredom
in ungraceful stride

awkward looks
routined ways
together trottin
like a pair of strays

their dying faces
at boring places
tell their story
of past gone glory

loneliness
galore
together
even a bigger bore

rejecting
true desire
afraid of sparks
igniting a fire

surprise surprise
it’s love’s demise

She ran through fields of corn

far away stars
and a pale moon for company
guided her
as she ran
through fields of corn
with ominous secrets
chasing her
since she was born
fleeing
from a false start
her heart bled
her soul torn

she did not get very far
as she was run over
by a swerving car…

Estate

the difference between living
in or on estate
could be £5 million

in an estate
one has the feeling
one has the whole place to oneself

whilst on an estate
we know,
and (un)willingly accept,
we all live in one house…

Hollywood hiccups: my personal annoyances

why do they always drink alcohol?
why do they always drink a lot or binge drink?
how do they become sober after one cup of coffee?
why do they always smoke (and often secretly)?
why do people who have stopped smoking always have a drag of someone’s smoke when talking outside to someone who is smoking or stopped smoking?
why do they never say (good)bye on the phone?
why do they toss bear caps everywhere except in the bin?
why have they always got the sound on on their mobiles everywhere they go?
why do they never answer them in case of an emergency?
why do they never eat or never finish what they eat when they do eat?
why do they talk when they eat and let their food go stone cold?
how come no one has to wait for a taxis? They point and one is there?
why do they always find a parking spot?
why do detectives never do any paperwork?
how come all conversations are perfect? No grammatical errors?
how come everyone leaves the hospital after they wake up?
how does a dna result come back within a day?
how come every woman has perfect hair?
why do all houses look neat?
why is it when someone holds a speech everybody listens silently?
why do people leave the house without having breakfast?
why are there never any traffic jams when there’s a car chase?
how does the right tv channel come on straight away when someone wants to see the news?
why do woman after sex always wear an oversized buttoned man’s shirt?
how can people board planes after the gate has been shut?
why do bullied kids never tell their parents what goes on?
how come cars never start when they are about to be chased?
why do high school kids look like adults?
why do cops always have bad relationships with their wives and daughters?
what or why do I care?

Mildread

you devilish delight
always looking for a fight
all for law
and order
made sure
no one crossed your border
capped
and ready to rule
over the best
cuckoo’s finest
captured in your nest

~R.I.P. Louise Fletcher

Memories of a classroom: an enumeration of unforgettable odors

perspiration
pot
poo
pee
paper towels
perfume
peppermint
puke
pencils
poppers
pizza
pink erasers
crayons
chalk
and cheese
snot
from sneeze
jeez
cigarettes smoke
made me choke
coffee
tea
horny hormones
arts
and farts
soap
spilled milk
and ink
I think
glue
goo
dog shit
on my shoe
drains
fruit
stains
rubber
blubber
rank
radiators
musky books
bleach
bleechers
dirty looks
make up
teachers
airosol
alcohol
leather
mildew
stew
What about you?

My deli

I’ve got truffles
I’ve got grapes
I’ve got what you need
I’ve got olives and flaxseed

I’ve got cheeses
I’ve got sweets
something hearty
and other treats

I’ve got a sausage
it’s nice and hot
yet pickled onions
I have not

Potatoes she peeled: a poem for my nanna

where to begin
maybe with the small cracks
in her skin
every afternoon
and again soon
she sat down
in a kitchen
basket on her lap
whilst you heard
the water
dripping from the tap
she peeled potatoes
part of her daily chores
that earthy fragrance
ingrained in her pores
taking out the pits
with a tiny knife
the homely joys
she thought
of her daily life

Rheum

eye candy
gone dry
settled in the corner
of my awakening eye

my dreams hardened
into crusty bits
after I dreamed
of your voluptuous t(·)(·)ts

Ol’ Phil

ol’ Phil
fits the bill
he’s the one
that would kill
just for a thrill
and I think
that he will
in the still
of the night

Alienation

an alien nation
landed on earth
during the probation
they wanted to feast and drink
during their vacation

they drank all the moonshine
in Georgia and Kentucky
they never got caught
I guess one can say
they were lucky 🍀

Witty word: Philosofree

definition of philosofree
/fi-los-uh-free/

noun
Free of any kind or type of philosophy, principles, concepts, dogmas and doctrines:
After reading all books on philosophy Walter decided to become philosofree and burn all his books whilst thinking why a book is called a book.

verb
Freeing all philosophers of their ideology:
Ivan said: “Men, I shall philosofree thee and let you believe what I have to say, which is nothing”.

Origin of philosofree:
2021; poetpas ©; Modern English, based on silliness and wit.

It is that!

it is that
of what
I not yet know,
and it’s meaning,
it be true or false,
I fear most,
for knowing it
or by comparison,
may alter
or liberate
my process
of thinking

It is that!

Sugar lumps

slowly they dissolve
descending into brown
spreading their sweetness
on their way down

the perfect balance
never wrong
like little white angels
peeing on your tongue

Witty word: Ohzone

Definition of ohzone
/oh-zohn/

noun
1 area that is distinguished for some purpose in which a certain amount or a degree of complacency or disregard exists or is established:
Due to his addiction to his IPhone Archibald found himself comfortably numb in his ohzone and shrugged when his mother said: “I’m leaving your dad and I’m going back to Zanzibar to move in with Darlene”

2 a place where shallow and ignorant people live:
Al and Peggy Bundy were happily living in their ohzone until uncle Ted came knocking on their door.

Origin of ohzone:
2021; poetpas ©; Modern English, based on silliness and wit.

Featuring: James Carter

Today I’m featuring a jazz musician who isn’t that well known amongst many jazz lovers but to me this saxophone beast is as good as any of the famous players.
He has a very rebellious and sometimes humorous way of playing and is never boring. An effusive, dynamically gifted jazz saxophonist I can listen to for hours and hours, for days on end…

James Carter was born on January 3 1969 in Detroit , Michigan, and learned to play under the tutelage of Donald Washington, becoming a member of his youth jazz ensemble Bird-Trane-Sco-NOW!! As a young man, Carter attended Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp, becoming the youngest faculty member at the camp. He began playing at age 11 and studied early on with trumpeter Marcus Belgrave. A prodigy, he progressed quickly. He first toured Scandinavia with the International Jazz Band in 1985 at the age of 16. At age17 he joined Wynton Marsalis on tour.

On May 31, 1988, at the Detroit Institute of Arts (DIA), Carter was a last-minute addition for guest artist Lester Bowie, which turned into an invitation to play with his new quintet (forerunner of his New York Organ Ensemble) in New York City that following November at the now defunct Carlos 1 jazz club. This was pivotal in Carter’s career, putting him in musical contact with the world, and he moved to New York two years later. Carter issued no less than six recordings under his own name between 1993 and 2000, all of them with different focuses, from a set of standards, Conversin’ with the Elders in 1995, to an electric funk record, Layin’ in the Cut, to a simultaneously released set in tribute to Django Reinhardt, Chasin the Gypsy. Three years later, he honored the legendary Billie Holiday with Gardenias for Lady Day.

He has been prominent as a performer and recording artist on the jazz scene since the late 1980s, playing saxophones, flute, and clarinets. On his album Chasin’ the Gypsy (2000), he recorded with his cousin, the jazz violinist Regina Carter.

Carter has won DownBeat magazine’s Critics and Readers Choice award for baritone saxophone several years in a row. He has performed, toured and played on albums with Lester Bowie, Julius Hemphill, Frank Lowe & the Saxemble, Kathleen Battle, the World Saxophone Quartet, Cyrus Chestnut, Wynton Marsalis, Dee Dee Bridgewater and the Mingus Big Band.

Carter is an authority on vintage saxophones, and he owns an extensive collection of such instruments, including one formerly played by Don Byas.

“One of the most charismatic and powerful soloists in jazz,” per the New York Times, Carter harbors a command of his instruments that is astonishingly complete, though he only employs that technique in the service of canny ideas. Even when he appears on the verge of shattering his horn, overblowing rapid-fire lines to otherworldly effect, he’s evoking early jazz, jump blues, the avant-garde and other lessons residing inside his vast, scholarly knowledge of the music of the African-American experience.

Check him out (or not):

Sources: Wikipedia, YouTube, interweb, poetpas

Free tips for men: Toilet 🚽

When you need to pee, sit down rather than stand up! This will prevent a possible deflecting urine stream spritzing the area surrounding you. Think of bath mats, tiles, radiators, shoes and of course the toilet itself.

It will save you a lot of cleaning and will prevent bad hygiene, bacteria, sticky surfaces and rusty radiators (urine contains saltpetre).

Extra tip: keep your pubes trimmed…you don’t want them scattered all round your WC as well? Or stuck to the urine for those who’ll remain standing?

So toilet seat down and be seated😊

Stay tuned for more…

Frau Glockenspiel

every day
she peeks
through my window
on her daily walk
short stepping her way
to an embracing slow death
me not knowing
who she is
where she comes from
where she lives
every day
her daily fix
around 6
she walks by
I call her
Frau Glockenspiel
I don’t know why…

Witty word: Lieability

definition of lieability
/lahy-a-bil-i-tee/

noun

1 the ability or skill to make false statements made with deliberate intent to deceive: His continuous lieability made him a believable, trustworthy and fraudulent friend.

2 the ability to be in a horizontal, recumbent, or prostrate position, as on a bed or the ground for long periods of time: Her liebility made it easy to mask her years of laziness and her self diagnosis of Myalgic Encephalomyelitis.

Origin of lieability:

2021; poetpas ©; Middle English, Old French, Old Norse, Gothic, Modern English, based on philosophical wit.









Featuring: Telly Savalas


Today I’m featuring this great actor and wise man, known as Kojak, also a philanthropist, a singer and a great poker player. Noted for his bald head and deep, resonant voice, this lollipop man warmed the hearts of many viewers for many years with his one liners and catchy phrases. ‘Who loves you baby’ 🍭 

Aristotelis Savalas was born in Garden City, New York, on January 21, 1922, the second of five children born to ethnic Greek parents. Savalas and his brother, Gus, sold newspapers and polished shoes to help support the family. Savalas initially spoke only Greek when he entered grade school, but later learned English. He won a spelling bee there in 1934; due to an oversight, he did not receive his prize until 1991, when the school principal and Boston Herald awarded it to him.

Savalas graduated from Sewanhaka High School in Floral Park, New York in 1940.

A renowned swimmer, he worked as a beach lifeguard after graduation from high school. However, on one occasion, he was unsuccessful in saving a father from drowning; as he attempted resuscitation, the man’s two children stood nearby crying for their father to wake up. This affected Savalas so much that he spent the rest of his life constantly promoting water safety, and later made all six of his children take swimming lessons.

In 1941, Savalas was drafted into the United States Army. In 1943, he was discharged from the Army with the rank of corporal after being severely injured in a car accident. Savalas spent more than a year recuperating in hospital with a broken pelvis, sprained ankle and concussion. He then attended the Armed Forces Institute where he studied radio and television production.

He received a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Columbia’s School of General Studies in 1946 and started working on a master’s degree while preparing for medical school.

Savalas did not consider acting as a career until asked if he could recommend an actor who could do a European accent. He did but as the friend in question could not go, Savalas himself went to cover for his friend and ended up being cast on “And Bring Home a Baby”, an episode of Armstrong Circle Theatre in January 1958. He appeared on two more episodes of the series in 1959 and 1960, one, acting alongside a young Sydney Pollack. He was also in a version of The Iceman Cometh.

Savalas quickly became in much demand as a guest star on TV shows.

Savalas made his film debut in Mad Dog Coll (1961), playing a cop. His work had impressed fellow actor Burt Lancaster, who arranged for Savalas to be cast in the John Frankenheimer directed The Young Savages (also 1961 and again playing a cop). Pollack worked on the film as an acting coach.

In one of his most acclaimed performances, Savalas reunited with Lancaster and Frankenheimer for Birdman of Alcatraz (1962), where he was nominated for the Academy Award and Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actor. The same year, he appeared as a private detective in Cape Fear, and The Interns, reprising his role from the latter film in The New Interns (1964).

Savalas also guest starred in a number of TV series during the decade including The New Breed, The Detectives, Ben Casey, The Twilight Zone (the episode “Living Doll”), The Fugitive (1963 TV series) and Arrest and Trial among others.

He was part of an all-star cast in The Dirty Dozen (1967).

Savalas’ first leading role in film was in the British crime comedy Crooks and Coronets (1969). The same year he appeared in the James Bond movie On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, playing Ernst Stavro Blofeld. He continued to appear in films during the 1970s including Kelly’s Heroes (1970) (with Clint Eastwood).He reunited with Christopher Lee in the 1976 thriller Killer Force, and also appeared in Peter Hyams’ Capricorn One (1978).

“I had worked my way up to star billing”, he later said, “when the bottom dropped out of the movie business. I could have stayed in Europe and made Italian movies but I discovered the big difference between an Italian and American movie is that in the American movie you get paid.”

Savalas first played Lt. Theodopolus “Theo” Kojak in the TV movie The Marcus–Nelson Murders (CBS, 1973), which was based on the real-life Career Girls Murder case.

Kojak was a bald New York City detective with a fondness for lollipops and whose tagline was “Who loves ya, baby?” (He also liked to say, “Everybody should have a little Greek in them.”) Although the lollipop gimmick was added in order to indulge his sweet tooth, Savalas also smoked heavily onscreen—cigarettes, cigarillos and cigars—throughout the first season’s episodes. The lollipops had apparently given him three cavities, and were part of an (unsuccessful) effort by Kojak (and Savalas himself) to curb his smoking. The critic Clive James explained the lead actor’s appeal as Kojak: “Telly Savalas can make bad slang sound like good slang and good slang sound like lyric poetry. It isn’t what he is, so much as the way he talks, that gets you tuning in.”

David Shipman later wrote: “Kojak was sympathetic to outcasts and ruthless with social predators. The show maintained a high quality to the end, mixing tension with some laughs and always anxious to tackle civic issues, one of its raisons d’etre in the first place. It was required viewing in Britain every Saturday evening for eight years. To almost everyone everywhere Kojak means Savalas and vice versa, but to Savalas himself the series was merely an interval, albeit a long one, in a distinguished career.”

Kojak aired on CBS for five seasons from October 24, 1973, until March 18, 1978, with 118 episodes produced. The role won Savalas an Emmy and two Golden Globes for Best Actor in a Drama Series. Co-stars on the show included Savalas’ younger brother George as Detective Stavros – a sensitive, wild-haired, quiet, comedic foil to Kojak’s street-wise humor in an otherwise dark dramatic series – Kevin Dobson as Kojak’s trusted young partner, Det. Bobby Crocker, who’s on-screen chemistry with Savalas was a success story of 1970s television, and Dan Frazer as Captain Frank McNeil.

Due to a decline in ratings, the series was canceled by CBS in 1978. Savalas and Frazer were the only actors to appear in all 118 episodes. Savalas was unhappy about the show’s demise but got the chance to reprise the Kojak persona in several television movies, starting in 1985. The first film, subtitled The Belarus File and broadcast in February 1985, reunited Savalas with several of his co-stars from the series: younger brother George, Dan Frazer, Mark Russell (Det. Saperstein) and Vince Conti (Det. Rizzo); this marked those actors’ final appearances in the Kojak franchise. A further six Kojak TV movies were produced, titled The Price of Justice (1987), Ariana, Fatal Flaw (both 1989), Flowers for Matty, It’s Always Something – with Kevin Dobson reprising his role of Bobby Crocker, now an Assistant District Attorney – and None So Blind (all 1990).

In 1992, he appeared in three episodes of the TV series The Commish (his son-in-law was one of the producers). This was Savalas’ final television role. He would appear in two further feature films before his death, Mind Twister (1993) and the posthumous release Backfire! (1995).

As a singer, Savalas had some chart success. His spoken word version of Bread’s “If” produced by Snuff Garrett reached No. 1 in both the UK and Ireland in March 1975, but just No.88 in Canada, and his version of Don Williams’s “Some Broken Hearts Never Mend” topped the charts in Switzerland in February 1981. He worked with composer and producer John Cacavas on many albums, including Telly (1974) which peaked at number 49 in Australia and Who Loves Ya, Baby (1976).

He received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1983. In 1999, TV Guide ranked him number 18 on its 50 Greatest TV Stars of All Time list.

Savalas was married three times. In 1948 after his father’s death from bladder cancer, Savalas married his college sweetheart, Katherine Nicolaides. Their daughter Christina, named after his mother, was born in 1950. In 1957 Katherine filed for divorce. She urged him to move back to his mother’s house during that same year. While Savalas was going broke, he founded the Garden City Theater Center in his native Garden City. While working there he met Marilyn Gardner, a theater teacher. They married in 1960. Marilyn gave birth to their daughter, Penelope, in 1961. A second daughter, Candace, was born in 1963. They divorced in 1974, after a long separation.

In January 1969, while working on the movie On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, Savalas met actress Sally Adams, an actress 25 years his junior whose daughter from a previous relationship is Nicollette Sheridan. Savalas later moved in with Sally, who gave birth to their son Nicholas Savalas on February 24, 1973. Although Savalas and Sally Adams never legally married, she went by the name Sally Savalas. They stopped living together in December 1978; she filed a palimony lawsuit against him in 1980, demanding support not only for herself and their son, but also for Nicollette.

In 1977, during the last season of Kojak, Savalas met Julie Hovland, a travel agent from Minnesota. The couple were married from 1984 until his death and had two children: Christian, an entrepreneur, singer and songwriter, and Ariana, an actress and singer/songwriter. Savalas was close friends with actor John Aniston, and was godfather to his daughter Jennifer, a successful TV and film actress.

Savalas held a degree in psychology and was a world-class poker player who finished 21st at the main event in the 1992 World Series of Poker. He was also a motorcycle racer and lifeguard. His other hobbies and interests included golfing, swimming, reading romantic books, watching football, traveling, collecting luxury cars, and gambling. He loved horse racing and bought a racehorse with movie director and producer Howard W. Koch. Naming the horse Telly’s Pop, it won several races in 1975 including the Norfolk Stakes and Del Mar Futurity.

In his capacity as producer for Kojak, he gave many stars their first break, as Burt Lancaster had done for him. He was considered by those who knew him to be a generous, graceful, compassionate man. He was also a strong contributor to his Greek Orthodox roots through the Saint Sophia and Saint Nicholas cathedrals in Los Angeles and was the sponsor of bringing electricity in the 1970s to his ancestral home, Ierakas, Greece.

As a philanthropist and philhellene, Savalas supported many Hellenic causes and made friends in major cities around the world.

In the 1980s, Savalas began to lose close relatives. His brother George Savalas, who played Stavros in the original series, died in 1985 of leukemia at age 60. His mother, Christina, who had always been his best friend, supporter and devoted parent, died in 1988. On November 22, 1989, Savalas was diagnosed with transitional cell cancer of the bladder.

Savalas died on January 22, 1994, one day after his 72nd birthday, of complications of prostate cancer at the Sheraton-Universal Hotel in Universal City, California. He had lived at the Sheraton in Universal City for 20 years, becoming such a fixture at the hotel bar that it was renamed Telly’s. Savalas was interred at the George Washington section of Forest Lawn – Hollywood Hills Cemetery in Los Angeles, California. The funeral, held in the Saint Sophia Greek Orthodox Church, was attended by his third wife, Julie, and his brother Gus. His first two wives, Katherine and Marilyn, also attended with their own children. The mourners included Angie Dickinson, Nicollette Sheridan, Jennifer Aniston (his goddaughter), Kevin Sorbo, Sally Adams, Frank Sinatra, Don Rickles, and several of Savalas’s Kojak co-stars – Kevin Dobson, Dan Frazer, and Vince Conti.

For the people who are old enough (lol), I still watch Kojak on video occasionally and I still enjoy his acting, the stories and the scenery of New York in the seventies. It takes you back to the free days of the Big Apple. I always found him to be a witty, funny, apt and strong individual.

Check him out (or not):

https://youtu.be/F0xG888KrTk

https://youtu.be/JIAVQ-0J-OA

https://youtu.be/L7qah1O6MGg

https://youtu.be/dPp5RHpka5E

https://youtu.be/-8hbUqhKM38

Sources: Wikipedia, YouTube, interweb, poetpas 















Free tips for men: Who needs an iron

When you wash a shirt or a pair of pants or anything in your washing machine don’t put it on the highest spin cycle. It will become too dry and so your clothes may come out too creasy.

The next thing you do is hang it on a hanger (don’t use pegs!) and due to the weight of the water left in your garment it shall pull most of the creases out. There are all sorts of hangers one can purchase.

Extra tip: put jumpers (sweaters) on a flat surface as hanging could well stretch the fabric!

Who needs an iron ☺️

Stay tuned for more…

Bland

blend in
with the boring blended
your life
has already ended

you have everything
sorted and mended
all in control
it’s bloody splendid

Psalm 23:4-6 King Silly Version

4 Yay, though I walk through the valley of life, I will fear some evil: for thou art with me; but with my staff I shall hope to silence thee.

5 Though thou preparest a table before me in the presence of thy family: they anoint my mind with shallowness; my head runneth over.

6 Surely to God I hope they shan’t follow me the remaining days of my life: or I will runneth a mile to the house of spirits, and dwell within.

The coach and the roach

a holistic coach
had an odd approach
trying to solve a problem
with the use of a cockroach

it was for a penis
that wouldn’t erect
and needed a remedy
to cure the defect

the roach was placed
in the man’s underpants
with a few leaves of nettle
and a couple of ants

the gigolo said:
“Eureka! I now have an itch;
I will proceed to pander
and I shall be rich!”

Featuring: Siomone de Beauvoir

Today I’m featuring Simone de Beauvoir, a very remarkable woman who is a most interesting figure in history, a French existentialist philosopher, writer, social theorist, and feminist activist. Though she did not consider herself a philosopher, and even though she was not considered one at the time of her death, she had a significant influence on both feminist existentialism and feminist theory.

Beauvoir wrote novels, essays, biographies, autobiographies, and monographs on philosophy, politics, and social issues. She was known for her 1949 treatise The Second Sex, a detailed analysis of women’s oppression and a foundational tract of contemporary feminism; and for her novels, including She Came to Stay (1943) and The Mandarins (1954). Her most enduring contribution to literature is her memoirs, notably the first volume, “Mémoires d’une jeune fille rangée” (1958), which has a warmth and descriptive power. She won the 1954 Prix Goncourt, the 1975 Jerusalem Prize, and the 1978 Austrian State Prize for European Literature. She was also known for her open, lifelong relationship with French philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre.

Beauvoir was born on 9 January 1908 into a bourgeois Parisian. Her parents were Georges Bertrand de Beauvoir, a lawyer, who once aspired to be an actor, and Françoise Beauvoir, a wealthy banker’s daughter and devout Catholic. Simone’s sister, Hélène, was born two years later on June 6, 1910. The family struggled to maintain their bourgeois status after losing much of their fortune shortly after World War I, and Françoise insisted the two daughters be sent to a prestigious convent school.

Beauvoir was intellectually precocious, fueled by her father’s encouragement; he reportedly would boast, “Simone thinks like a man!” Because of her family’s straitened circumstances, she could no longer rely on her dowry, and like other middle-class girls of her age, her marriage opportunities were put at risk. She took this opportunity to take steps towards earning a living for herself.

She first worked with Maurice Merleau-Ponty and Claude Lévi-Strauss, when all three completed their practice teaching requirements at the same secondary school. Although not officially enrolled, she sat in on courses at the École Normale Supérieure in preparation for the agrégation in philosophy, a highly competitive postgraduate examination that serves as a national ranking of students. It was while studying for it that she met students Jean-Paul Sartre, Paul Nizan, and René Maheu.

Writing of her youth in ‘Memoirs of a Dutiful Daughter’ she said: “My father’s individualism and pagan ethical standards were in complete contrast to the rigidly moral conventionalism of my mother’s teaching. This disequilibrium, which made my life a kind of endless disputation, is the main reason why I became an intellectual.”

Beauvoir pursued post-secondary education after completing her high school years at Lycée Fenelon. After passing baccalaureate exams in mathematics and philosophy in 1925, she studied mathematics at the Institut Catholique de Paris and literature/languages at the Institut Sainte-Marie. She then studied philosophy at the Sorbonne and after completing her degree in 1928, wrote her Diplôme d’Études Supérieures Spécialisées (roughly equivalent to an M.A. thesis) on Leibniz for Léon Brunschvicg Her studies of political philosophy through university influenced her to start thinking of societal concerns rather than her issues.

Beauvoir was raised in a strict Catholic household. In her youth, she was sent to convent schools. She was deeply religious as a child, at one point intending to become a nun. At age 14, Beauvoir questioned her faith as she saw many changes in the world after witnessing tragedies throughout her life. Consequently, she abandoned her faith in her early teens and remained an atheist for the rest of her life. To explain her atheist beliefs, Beauvoir stated, “Faith allows an evasion of those difficulties which the atheist confronts honestly. And to crown all, the believer derives a sense of great superiority from this very cowardice itself.”

From 1929 through 1943, Beauvoir taught at the lycée level until she could support herself solely on the earnings of her writings.

Beauvoir and Jean-Paul Sartre met during her college years. Intrigued by her determination as an educator, he intended to make their relationship romantic. However, she had no interest in doing so. During October 1929, Jean-Paul Sartre and Beauvoir became a couple. After they were confronted by her father, Sartre asked her to marry him on a provisional basis: One day while they were sitting on a bench outside the Louvre, he said, “Let’s sign a two-year lease”. Though Beauvoir wrote, “Marriage was impossible. I had no dowry”, scholars point out that her ideal relationships described in The Second Sex and elsewhere bore little resemblances to the marriage standards of the day. Instead, she and Sartre entered into a lifelong “soul partnership”, which was sexual but not exclusive, nor did it involve living together.

Sartre and Beauvoir always read each other’s work. Debate continues about the extent to which they influenced each other in their existentialist works, such as Sartre’s Being and Nothingness and Beauvoir’s She Came to Stay and “Phenomenology and Intent”. However, recent studies of Beauvoir’s work focus on influences other than Sartre, including Hegel and Leibniz. The Neo-Hegelian revival led by Alexandre Kojève and Jean Hyppolite in the 1930s inspired a whole generation of French thinkers, including Sartre, to discover Hegel’s Phenomenology of Spirit. However, Beauvoir, reading Hegel in German during the war, produced an original critique of his dialectic of consciousness.

Beauvoir’s prominent open relationships at times overshadowed her substantial academic reputation. Beginning in 1929, Beauvoir and Sartre were partners and remained so for 51 years, until his death in 1980. She chose never to marry and never had children. This gave her the time to advance her education and engage in political causes, write and teach, and take lovers. She lived with Claude Lanzmann from 1952 to 1959.

Perhaps her most famous lover was American author Nelson Algren. She met him in Chicago in 1947, she wrote to him across the Atlantic as “my beloved husband.” Algren won the National Book Award for The Man with the Golden Arm in 1950, and in 1954, Beauvoir won France’s most prestigious literary prize for The Mandarins, in which Algren is the character Lewis Brogan. Algren vociferously objected to their intimacy becoming public. Years after they separated, she was buried wearing his gift of a silver ring.

Beauvoir was bisexual, and her relationships with young women were controversial. French author Bianca Lamblin wrote in her book Mémoires d’une Jeune Fille Dérangée (A Disgraceful Affair) that, while a student at Lycée Molière, she was sexually exploited by her teacher Beauvoir, who was in her 30s. Lamblin had affairs with both Jean-Paul Sartre and Beauvoir.In 1943, Beauvoir was suspended from her teaching position when she was accused of seducing her 17-year-old lycée pupil Natalie Sorokine in 1939. Sorokine’s parents laid formal charges against Beauvoir for debauching a minor (the age of consent in France at the time was 15, and Beauvoir’s license to teach in France was revoked, although it was subsequently reinstated).

In 1977, Beauvoir signed a petition seeking to completely remove the age of consent in France.

Beauvoir published her first novel She Came to Stay in 1943. It has been assumed that it is inspired by her and Sartre’s sexual relationship with Olga Kosakiewicz and Wanda Kosakiewicz. Olga was one of her students in the Rouen secondary school where Beauvoir taught during the early 1930s. She grew fond of Olga. Sartre tried to pursue Olga but she rejected him, so he began a relationship with her sister Wanda. Upon his death, Sartre was still supporting Wanda. He also supported Olga for years, until she met and married Jacques-Laurent Bost, a lover of Beauvoir. However, the main thrust of the novel is philosophical, a scene in which to situate Beauvoir’s abiding philosophical pre-occupation – the relationship between the self and the other.

In the novel, set just before the outbreak of World War II, Beauvoir creates one character from the complex relationships of Olga and Wanda. The fictionalised versions of Beauvoir and Sartre have a ménage à trois with the young woman. The novel also delves into Beauvoir and Sartre’s complex relationship and how it was affected by the ménage à trois.

She Came to Stay was followed by many others, including The Blood of Others, which explores the nature of individual responsibility, telling a love story between two young French students participating in the Resistance in World War II.

In 1944, Beauvoir wrote her first philosophical essay, Pyrrhus et Cinéas, a discussion on existentialist ethics. She continued her exploration of existentialism through her second essay The Ethics of Ambiguity (1947); it is perhaps the most accessible entry into French existentialism. In the essay, Beauvoir clears up some inconsistencies that many, Sartre included, have found in major existentialist works such as Being and Nothingness. In The Ethics of Ambiguity, Beauvoir confronts the existentialist dilemma of absolute freedom vs. the constraints of circumstance.

At the end of World War II, Beauvoir and Sartre edited Les Temps Modernes, a political journal which Sartre founded along with Maurice Merleau-Ponty and others. Beauvoir used Les Temps Modernes to promote her own work and explore her ideas on a small scale before fashioning essays and books. Beauvoir remained an editor until her death.

The Second Sex, first published in 1949 in French as Le Deuxième Sexe, turns the existentialist mantra that existence precedes essence into a feminist one: “One is not born but becomes a woman” (French: “On ne naît pas femme, on le devient”). With this famous phrase, Beauvoir first articulated what has come to be known as the sex-gender distinction, that is, the distinction between biological sex and the social and historical construction of gender and its attendant stereotypes. Beauvoir argues that “the fundamental source of women’s oppression is its historical and social construction as the quintessential” Other.

Beauvoir defines women as the “second sex” because women are defined as inferior to men. She pointed out that Aristotle argued women are “female by virtue of a certain lack of qualities”, while Thomas Aquinas referred to women as “imperfect men” and the “incidental” being. She quotes “In itself, homosexuality is as limiting as heterosexuality: the ideal should be to be capable of loving a woman or a man; either, a human being, without feeling fear, restraint, or obligation.”

Beauvoir asserted that women are as capable of choice as men, and thus can choose to elevate themselves, moving beyond the “immanence” to which they were previously resigned and reaching “transcendence”, a position in which one takes responsibility for oneself and the world, where one chooses one’s freedom.

Chapters of The Second Sex were originally published in Les Temps modernes, in June 1949. The second volume came a few months after the first in France. It was published soon after in America due to the quick translation by Howard Parshley, as prompted by Blanche Knopf, wife of publisher Alfred A. Knopf. Because Parshley had only a basic familiarity with the French language, and a minimal understanding of philosophy (he was a professor of biology at Smith College), much of Beauvoir’s book was mistranslated or inappropriately cut, distorting her intended message. For years, Knopf prevented the introduction of a more accurate retranslation of Beauvoir’s work, declining all proposals despite the efforts of existentialist scholars.

Only in 2009 was there a second translation, to mark the 60th anniversary of the original publication. Constance Borde and Sheila Malovany-Chevallier produced the first integral translation in 2010, reinstating a third of the original work.

In the chapter “Woman: Myth and Reality” of The Second Sex, Beauvoir argued that men had made women the “Other” in society by the application of a false aura of “mystery” around them. She argued that men used this as an excuse not to understand women or their problems and not to help them, and that this stereotyping was always done in societies by the group higher in the hierarchy to the group lower in the hierarchy. She wrote that a similar kind of oppression by hierarchy also happened in other categories of identity, such as race, class, and religion, but she claimed that it was nowhere more true than with gender in which men stereotyped women and used it as an excuse to organize society into a patriarchy.

Despite her contributions to the feminist movement, especially the French women’s liberation movement, and her beliefs in women’s economic independence and equal education, Beauvoir was initially reluctant to call herself a feminist. However, after observing the resurgence of the feminist movement in the late 1960s and early 1970s, Beauvoir stated she no longer believed a socialist revolution to be enough to bring about women’s liberation. She publicly declared herself a feminist in 1972.

In 2018 the manuscript pages of Le Deuxième Sexe were published. At the time her adopted daughter, Sylvie Le Bon-Beauvoir, a philosophy professor, described her mother’s writing process: Beauvoir wrote every page of her books longhand first and only after that would hire typists.

Published in 1954, The Mandarins won France’s highest literary prize, the Prix Goncourt. The book is set after the end of World War II and follows the personal lives of philosophers and friends among Sartre’s and Beauvoir’s intimate circle, including her relationship with American writer Nelson Algren, to whom the book was dedicated.

Algren was outraged by the frank way Beauvoir described their sexual experiences in both The Mandarins and her autobiographies. Algren vented his outrage when reviewing American translations of Beauvoir’s work. Much material bearing on this episode in Beauvoir’s life, including her love letters to Algren, entered the public domain only after her death.

Beauvoir’s early novel Les Inséparables, long suppressed, was published in French in 2020 and two different English translations in 2021. Written in 1954, the book describes her first love, a classmate named Elisabeth Lacoin (“Zaza”) who died before age 22, and had as a teenager a “passionate and tragic” relationship with Beauvoir and Merleau-Ponty, then teaching at the same school. Disapproved by Sartre, the novel was deemed “too intimate” to be published during Beauvoir’s lifetime.

Beauvoir wrote popular travel diaries about time spent in the United States and China and published essays and fiction rigorously, especially throughout the 1950s and 1960s. She published several volumes of short stories, including The Woman Destroyed, which, like some of her other later work, deals with aging.

1980 saw the publication of When Things of the Spirit Come First, a set of short stories centered around and based upon women important to her earlier years. Though written long before the novel She Came to Stay, Beauvoir did not at the time consider the stories worth publishing, allowing some forty years to pass before doing so.

Sartre and Merleau-Ponty had a longstanding feud, which led Merleau-Ponty to leave Les Temps Modernes. Beauvoir sided with Sartre and ceased to associate with Merleau-Ponty. In Beauvoir’s later years, she hosted the journal’s editorial meetings in her flat and contributed more than Sartre, whom she often had to force to offer his opinions.

Beauvoir also wrote a four-volume autobiography, consisting of Memoirs of a Dutiful Daughter, The Prime of Life, Force of Circumstance, and All Said and Done. In 1964 Beauvoir published a novella-length autobiography, A Very Easy Death, covering the time she spent visiting her aging mother, who was dying of cancer. The novella brings up questions of ethical concerns with truth-telling in doctor-patient relationships.

Her 1970 long essay La Vieillesse (The Coming of Age) is a rare instance of an intellectual meditation on the decline and solitude all humans experience if they do not die before about the age of 60.

In the 1970s Beauvoir became active in France’s women’s liberation movement. She wrote and signed the Manifesto of the 343 in 1971, a manifesto that included a list of famous women who claimed to have had an abortion, then illegal in France. Some argue most of the women had not had abortions, including Beauvoir. Signatories were diverse as Catherine Deneuve, Delphine Seyrig, and Beauvoir’s sister Poupette. In 1974, abortion was legalized in France.

In a 1975 interview with Betty Friedan Beauvoir said “No woman should be authorized to stay at home and raise her children. Society should be different. Women should not have that choice, precisely because if there is such a choice, too many women will make that one.”

After Sartre died in 1980, Beauvoir published his letters to her with edits to spare the feelings of people in their circle who were still living. After Beauvoir’s death, Sartre’s adopted daughter and literary heir Arlette Elkaïm would not let many of Sartre’s letters be published in unedited form. Most of Sartre’s letters available today have Beauvoir’s edits, which include a few omissions but mostly the use of pseudonyms. Beauvoir’s adopted daughter and literary heir Sylvie Le Bon, unlike Elkaïm, published Beauvoir’s unedited letters to both Sartre and Algren.

Simone de Beauvoir’s The Second Sex is considered a foundational work in the history of feminism. Beauvoir had denied being feminist multiple times but ultimately admitted that she was one after the influential Second Sex became crucial in the world of feminism. The work has had a profound influence, opening the way for second-wave feminism in the United States, Canada, Australia, and around the world. Although Beauvoir has been quoted as saying “There is a certain unreasonable demand that I find a little stupid because it would enclose me, immobilize me completely in a sort of feminist concrete block.” Her works on feminism have paved the way for all future feminists. The founders of the second-wave read The Second Sex in translation, including Kate Millett, Shulamith Firestone, Juliet Mitchell, Ann Oakley and Germaine Greer. All acknowledged their profound debt to Beauvoir, including visiting her in France, consulting with her at crucial moments, and dedicating works to her. Betty Friedan, whose 1963 book The Feminine Mystique is often regarded as the opening salvo of second-wave feminism in the United States, later said that reading The Second Sex in the early 1950s “led me to whatever original analysis of women’s existence I have been able to contribute to the Women’s movement and its unique politics. I looked to Simone de Beauvoir for philosophical and intellectual authority.”

At one point in the early seventies, Beauvoir also aligned herself with the League for Women’s rights as a means to campaign and fight against sexism in French society. Beauvoir’s influence goes beyond just her impact on second-wave founders, and extends to numerous aspects of feminism, including literary criticism, history, philosophy, theology, criticism of scientific discourse, and psychotherapy. When Beauvoir first became involved with the feminism movement, one of her first objectives was that of legalizing abortion. Donna Haraway wrote that, “despite important differences, all the modern feminist meanings of gender have roots in Simone de Beauvoir’s claim that ‘one is not born a woman (one becomes one) ”.This “most famous feminist sentence ever written” is echoed in the title of Monique Wittig’s 1981 essay One Is Not Born a Woman. Judith Butler took the concept a step further, arguing that Beauvoir’s choice of the verb to become suggests that gender is a process, constantly being renewed in an ongoing interaction between the surrounding culture and individual choice.

Beauvoir died of pneumonia on 14 April 1986 in Paris, aged 78. She is buried next to Sartre at the Montparnasse Cemetery in Paris. She was honored as a figure at the forefront of the struggle for women’s rights around the time of her passing.

In Paris, France Place Jean-Paul-Satre-et-Simone-de-Beauvoir is a square where Beauvoir’s legacy lives on. It was named after the French philosopher couple, Jean-Paul Sartre and Simone de Beauvoir, and is one of the few squares in Paris to be officially named after a couple. The pair lived close to the square at 42 rue Bonaparte.

Slightly controversial, I admire this intriguing woman for her strength and her thoughts on existentialism.

Check her out (or not):

Sources: Wikipedia, YouTube, interweb, poetpas

Deepression

I stare
from within
the shadows
looking
for the light
but I fear
I can’t win
this everlasting fight

darkness
has surrounded me
and embroiled me
in sorrow
I shall have faith
yet I hope
I shan’t wake
tomorrow

~ photo Roberto de Mitri

Featuring: Brian Setzer

Today I’m featuring a very talented, rebellious and sweet musician who goes by the name Brian Setzer. Somewhat underrated, this cat with enormous flair and musical soul is a great entertainer and live performer. He put rockabilly back on the map, reinvented it, and gave it world wide fame with his band the Stray Cats.

Setzer was born April 1959 in Massapequa, New York. He started on the euphonium and played in jazz bands when he was in school. He found a way to hear jazz at the Village Vanguard, though as he got older he became more interested in rock, punk, and rockabilly. He was a member of the Bloodless Pharaohs and the Tomcats, which he began with his brother, Gary. The Tomcats became the Stray Cats when double bassist Lee Rocker and drummer Slim Jim Phantom joined and Gary left the band. In 1980, thinking they might have more success in England than in America, they sold their instruments to pay for airplane tickets and flew to London.

After performing in London for a few months, they met Dave Edmunds, a guitarist and record producer who shared their love of rockabilly and 1950s’ rock and roll. Edmunds produced their debut album, Stray Cats (1981), which yielded two hit singles, “Stray Cat Strut” and “Rock This Town”. The second album, Gonna Ball (1982), was less successful. The band returned to America and released Built for Speed (1982), produced again by Dave Edmunds, with songs collected from their first two albums. Helped by their music videos on MTV, the Stray Cats became popular in America. Their next album, Rant n’ Rave with the Stray Cats produced the hit “(She’s) Sexy + 17”.

The Stray Cats disbanded in 1984, though they occasionally reunited, recorded, and toured. After recording three albums with different producers, they returned to Dave Edmunds for Choo Choo Hot Fish (1992).

After the Stray Cats disbanded in 1984, Setzer began a solo career that included working as a sideman for other acts, such as the Honeydrippers led by Robert Plant. On his first solo album, The Knife Feels Like Justice (1986), he turned away from rockabilly and moved toward rhythm and blues (R&B) and the heartland rock of John Mellencamp. The album was produced by Don Gehman and featured Kenny Aronoff on drums. Both men had worked on albums by Mellencamp. His second studio album Live Nude Guitars followed in 1988. While this album retained some heartland rock elements, it found Setzer moving in more of a straight-ahead blues rock direction, comparable to George Thorogood’s style; Setzer served as co-producer along with Larson Paine, Chris Thomas and David A. Stewart. He went on tour with Thorogood later that year.

Setzer returned to his love of music from the 1950s, this time the jump blues of Louis Prima. Whereas he had resurrected rockabilly in the 1980s, he resuscitated swing in the 1990s. He assembled the Brian Setzer Orchestra, a seventeen piece big band that got the public’s attention with a cover version of Prima’s “Jump, Jive an’ Wail” from the album The Dirty Boogie (1998). The song won the Grammy Award for Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals, while “Sleep Walk” from the same album won the Grammy for Best Pop Instrumental Performance.

The album Wolfgang’s Big Night Out (2007) featured Setzer’s interpretation of classical pieces, such as Beethoven’s “Symphony No. 5” and “Für Elise”. Wolfgang earned Setzer his eighth Grammy nomination, this time for Best Classical Crossover Album.

He executive produced the album Ready Steady Go! (2014) by Drake Bell and played guitar on two songs.

Setzer has sold 13 million records and received the Orville H. Gibson Lifetime Achievement Award throughout his career as founder/leader of the Stray Cats, the 19-piece Brian Setzer Orchestra, and a solo artist.

Setzer has been married three times, most recently in 2005 to Julie Reiten, a former singer with the Dustbunnies, and lives in Minneapolis.

Brian Setzer has a very large guitar collection which spans many decades and brands. He favours vintage equipment and hollow body guitars, and currently endorses Gretsch guitars. At one time Setzer stated: “Nothing feels right after a Gretsch”.

In 2019 Setzer had to cancel his Christmas tour as a result of severe tinnitus (noise/ringing in ears). He has always liked playing loud.

On June 25, 2021, Setzer announced a new solo album, his first in 7 years, titled Gotta Have the Rumble. The rumble is about his love for motorcycles and hot rods, which have been a part of Brian’s life since he was 15 years old. He loves the adrenaline rush he gets by going fast.

According to Brian, the “rumble” also refers to two other things, one musical and the other medical. Brian likes to stand quite close to his vintage Fender Bassman amps to get his trademark sound, which causes his guitar to “rumble.” Unfortunately, the loud sound exposure has caused what Brian calls a rumble in his ears because, as aforementioned, he has developed a hearing loss with tinnitus. Fortunately, Brian’s symptoms have improved with a decrease in noise level exposure.

This awesome vocalist and guitarist has always pulled my heartstrings with his sweet rocking’ chords, and humbleness has turned this man into a fine individual.

Check him out (or not):

Sources: Wikipedia, YouTube, interweb, poetpas©️

Little boxes 📦

Little boxes on the hillside
Little boxes made of ticky-tacky
Little boxes on the hillside
Little boxes all the same
There’s a green one and a pink one
And a blue one and a yellow one
And they’re all made out of ticky-tacky
And they all look just the same
And the people in the houses
All went to the university
Where they were put in boxes
And they came out all the same
And there’s doctors and lawyers
And business executives
And they’re all made out of ticky-tacky
And they all look just the same
And they all play on the golf course
And drink their martinis dry
And they all have pretty children
And the children go to school
And the children go to summer camp
And then to the university
Where they are put in boxes
And they come out all the same
And the boys go into business
And marry and raise a family
In boxes made of ticky-tacky
And they all look just the same
There’s a pink one and a green one
And a blue one and a yellow one
And they’re all made out of ticky-tacky
And they all look just the same

~Pete Seeger

Witty word: Handycap

Definition of handycap
/han-dee kap/

Noun
1 a brimless head covering with a visor, to make people (more) handy:
Jonas bought a handycap as he had two left hands. After a week he now had 2 right hands. And a handycap.

2 state of affairs whereby there is a limit to being handy:
Red thought he could just fix about any old thing but there was a handycap as to what he could mend, as he was blind as a bat.

Origin of handycap:
2021; poetpas ©; Modern English, based on silliness and wit.

Featuring: Harry Crews

Today I’m featuring a man, an American writer and philosopher, a very peculiar individual who always had a good story to tell. He often made use of violent, grotesque characters and set them in regions of the Deep South. I first spotted him in one of my favorite documentaries: Searching for the Wrong-eyed Jesus. Sometimes in life you come across people who alter your way of thinking or add freedom to it. This Bard of Bacon County is such a man.

Harry Crews was born June 7, 1935, during the Great Depression to two poor tenant farmers in Bacon County, Georgia. His father died while he was still a baby, and his mother soon remarried to his father’s brother. Crews was unaware that this man was not his biological father until years later.

As a child, he suffered two near-death experiences. When he was just five he contracted polio, causing his legs to fold up into the back of his thighs. He was originally told by doctors that he would not be able to walk again. After about a year of being immobile, except crawling with his hands, his legs straightened again and he was able to walk. Soon after this experience, he then fell into a vat of nearly boiling water, which was being used for soaking dead hogs before they were further prepared. His head did not go under the water, which saved his life, according to doctors. He suffered extreme burns on most of the rest of his body. He once again was unable to leave the bed when he was healing. Crews wrote in A Childhood: The Biography of a Place: “Nearly everybody I knew had something missing, a finger cut off, a toe split, an ear half-chewed away, an eye clouded with blindness from a glancing fence staple. And if they didn’t have something missing, they were carrying scars from barbed wire, or knives, or fishhooks.” These experiences later influenced the freakish characters he wrote about, although he did not like to use the term “freak” to describe them.

While Crews was still a child, his mother left his stepfather, and he and his brother went with her to live in the Springfield section of Jacksonville, Florida. Crews finished high school there as a below average student. After graduation, he joined the Marines during the Korean War. After his service, he attended the University of Florida on the G.I. Bill. Here, Crews became a student of Andrew Nelson Lytle, who had also taught Flannery O’Connor, and James Dickey. Crews and Lytle kept in contact for years afterwards, and Lytle provided criticism of Crews’s early work.

After an unplanned pregnancy, Crews married Sally Ellis, who gave birth to his first son, Patrick Scott. Sally soon wanted a divorce due to his infidelity and obsessiveness with writing. “I was obsessed to the point of desperation with becoming a writer,” he wrote, “and, further, I lived with the conviction that I had gotten a late start toward that difficult goal…Consequently, perhaps I was impatient, irritable, and inattentive toward Sally as a young woman and mother.” However, he soon convinced Sally to remarry, and they had a second son, Byron Jason.

Crews graduated from the University of Florida with a degree in English, and eventually received a graduate degree of education. Crews then began teaching English, which he continued to do for the rest of his career, along with his career as a writer. In 1963, he had his first story published: “The Unattached Smile”. In 1964, he published another short story, “A Long Wail”.

In 1964 his first son, Patrick, drowned in a neighbor’s pool. Crews tried to perform mouth-to-mouth resuscitation, but this proved ineffectual. After the death of his son, Crews continued writing his first novel, The Gospel Singer, which appeared in 1968. Just after this publication, another came for his second novel, Naked in Garden Hills. Both were well received by critics at the time. In 1972, Sally asked for a second and final divorce. Crews did not marry again.

After Crews’s first two novels, he wrote prolifically, including novels, screenplays and essays, for journals including Esquire. He often set precise due times to finish whatever he was working on, and so had quick turnaround between writings. Once he published The Gospel Singer, he began to write eight novels, publishing one almost every year. Much of Crews’s work is now out of print.

His works were known to feature “freaks”, and “outcasts”, usually from rural areas. In Car, a man consumes an entire car by slowly eating piece by piece. In The Knockout Artist, a poor, Georgia-born boxer with a glass jaw knocks himself out at parties for money. A Feast of Snakes, one of his best known, and most provocative novels, has been banned in South Africa.

Crews felt strongly that authors should write about experiences that they have actually had. In his personal life, he often moved from obsession to obsession, and became knowledgeable on many subjects. Crews and Sally learned karate together, which then influenced Karate Is a Thing of the Spirit. In addition, The Hawk is Dying features an amateur hawk trainer who deals with condescension from college professors, and features a son-figure who drowns. Crews himself had a fascination with hawks for a period of time, and even trapped and trained them so they would sit on his arm. Body is a story about a competitive female body builder, her trainer, and her lower-class family from Waycross, Georgia. Crews himself trained his girlfriend, Maggie Powell, who would become a Southeast bodybuilding champion.

During his time writing for Esquire, he wrote a column called “Grits” for fourteen months in the 1970s that covered such topics as cockfighting and dog fighting. Filled with rough experiences he had outside of urban life, “grits” became a term he used to describe the tough southern characters featured in his writing.

Crews continued writing and publishing his entire life. As his reputation grew, he became a favorite of Madonna, Sean Penn, Kim Gordon, and Thurston Moore. Madonna and Penn discussed making film adaptations of his novels, but these never came to fruition. Crews’s final novel, An American Family, featured a blurb on the cover from Moore, saying, “God bless Harry Crews, America’s best writer. He’ll break your heart but he’ll always bring you love.”

Harry Crews’s work has become synonymous with the genre Grit Lit. Crews is considered a major influence, alongside Flannery O’Connor, Cormac McCarthy, and Barry Hannah, along with later writers in the genre including Larry Brown, Dorothy Allison, and Donald Ray Pollock. Grit Lit is usually set in rural areas and often in what has been called the “Rough South”. Larry Brown, one of the most celebrated writers in the genre, objected to the term “Grit Lit”, but he dedicated his novel, Fay, to Crews, calling him “my uncle in all ways but blood.” He and Crews remained friends until Brown’s death in 2004.

Grit Lit: A Rough South Reader, defines the genre as “as typically blue collar or working class, mostly small town, sometimes rural, occasionally but not always violent, usually but not necessarily Southern.” The subjects of the stories often have to deal with extreme circumstances for survival. The characters usually use their roughness, depravity, and violence as a means of living. Crews’s work has become synonymous with the “Rough South,” though he did not like the label “Southern writer”. Grit Lit itself can become an “acquired taste”, for those not from the South.

Harry Crews’s experiences as a poor boy from Bacon County, Georgia, have made a major impact on his own stories. Many other Grit Lit writers are from working-class backgrounds as well, and use their experiences as a tool for writing their stories with accuracy. Crews has said, “A writer’s job is to get naked, to hide nothing, to look away from nothing, to look at it. To not blink, to not be embarrassed by it or ashamed of it. Strip it down and let’s get to where the blood is, where the bone is.”

Crews died on March 28, 2012, from complications of neuropathy. His sole surviving son, Byron J. Crews, is professor of English and Dramatic Writing at Wright State University in Dayton, Ohio. and is the personal representative and acting executor of the Harry Crews Literary Estate.

I love this man and his way of thinking, raw honesty!

Check him out (or not):

A brilliant thing he says about the process writing:

Sources: Wikipedia, YouTube, interweb, poetpas©️

Dear Bill

unable to cope
you hang yourself
with rope
you turn on
the gas
and let things
come to pass
or jump
in front of a train
as you can’t handle
the pain
you drive
off a cliff

but what if
you just chill
and take a pill
and make sure
you put me
in your will
or won’t
my dear Bill
I was kidding
cause I love you
in spite
of the money
you owe me
still…

Writers tears

His heart danced upon her movements like a cork upon a tide. He heard what her eyes said to him from beneath their cowl and knew that in some dim past, whether in life or revery, he had heard their tale before.

~James Joyce

Death

death is part of life
the end bit
for your husband
or your wife

your father
your mother
your sister
your brother

your friends
your fiends
and those
that do not bother

Featuring: Ricky Gervais

Today I’m featuring a comedian who is funny, daft, sensitive and deadly honest. I love this man as he always searches for truths and can turn sadness into laughter. He is a realist and makes many of us aware of our human emotions, all in good spirit.

Ricky Dene Gervais (1961) is an English comedian, actor, director, and writer. He is best known for co-creating, co-writing, and acting in the British television mockumentary sitcom The Office (2001–2003). He has won seven BAFTA Awards, five British Comedy Awards, two Emmy Awards, three Golden Globe Awards, and the Rose d’Or twice (2006 and 2019), and has been nominated for a Screen Actors Guild Award. In 2007, he was placed at No. 11 on Channel 4’s 100 Greatest Stand-Ups, and at No. 3 in their 2010 list. In 2010, he was included in the Time 100 list of World’s Most Influential People.

Gervais initially worked in the music industry. He attempted a career as a pop star in the 1980s as the singer of the new-wave act Seona Dancing, and managed the then-unknown band Suede before turning to comedy. He appeared on The 11 O’Clock Show on Channel 4 between 1998 and 2000, garnering a reputation as an outspoken and sharp-witted social provocateur. In 2000, he was given a Channel 4 spoof talk show, Meet Ricky Gervais. He achieved greater mainstream fame the following year with his BBC television mock documentary series The Office, followed by Extras in 2005, both of which he co-wrote and co-directed with Stephen Merchant, and in which he played the lead roles of David Brent (The Office) and Andy Millman (Extras). He starred in the 2016 comedy film David Brent: Life on the Road, which he also wrote and directed.

Gervais began his stand-up career in the late 1990s. He has performed five multinational stand-up comedy tours, and he wrote the Flanimals book series. Gervais, Merchant, and Karl Pilkington created the podcast The Ricky Gervais Show, which has spawned various spin-offs starring Pilkington and produced by Gervais and Merchant. Gervais has also starred in the Hollywood films Ghost Town, the Night at the Museum trilogy, For Your Consideration, and Muppets Most Wanted. He wrote, directed, and starred in The Invention of Lying and the Netflix-released Special Correspondents. He hosted the Golden Globe Awards in 2010, 2011, 2012, 2016, and again in 2020. Gervais also appeared on the game show Child Support. He is also the creator, executive producer, director, and writer of the Netflix comedy series After Life, where he plays the lead role of Tony Johnson.

Gervais attended Whitley Park Infants and Junior Schools and received his secondary education at Ashmead Comprehensive School. After a gap year which he spent working as a gardener at the University of Reading, he attended University College London (UCL) in 1980. He intended to study biology but changed to philosophy after two weeks, and was awarded an upper second-class honours degree in the subject from University of London in 1983. During his time there, he met Jane Fallon, with whom he has been in a relationship since 1982.

In 1983, during his final year as a student at University College London, Gervais and his best friend Bill Macrae formed the new wave pop duo Seona Dancing. They were signed by London Records, which released two of their singles—”More to Lose” and “Bitter Heart”. The songs failed to make the UK Singles Chart. Despite not being successful in the UK, Seona Dancing did manage to score a hit in the Philippines with “More to Lose”. Gervais also worked as the manager for Suede before they became successful in the 1990s.

In 2013, Gervais performed a live tour as David Brent along with his band Foregone Conclusion, Brent’s fictional band in The Office. He and the band performed songs written under the Brent character, including “Equality Street” and “Free Love Freeway”. Gervais also produced a series of YouTube videos, ‘Learn Guitar with David Brent’, featuring acoustic guitar versions of nine songs.

In 2016, as part of the Life on the Road film promotion, Gervais published the David Brent Songbook of 15 songs, which he also recorded for the album Life on the Road as David Brent and Foregone Conclusion.

After the first series of The Office, Gervais and Merchant worked at Xfm in November 2001 for a Saturday radio show, where they began working with Karl Pilkington, who produced the shows and later collaborated with them on their series of podcasts. In October 2017, Gervais began hosting the weekly radio show Ricky Gervais Is Deadly Sirius on Sirius XM, which ran until 2019.

Ricky also did some podcasting featuring Gervais, Merchant, and Karl Pilkington. Throughout January and February 2006 the podcast was consistently ranked the number 1 podcast in the world. It appeared in the 2007 edition of the Guinness Book of World Records as the world’s most-downloaded podcast, with an average 261,670 downloads per episode during its first month. Two more series, each with six podcasts, were released between February and September 2006.

In late 2006, three more free podcasts were released. Together called “The Podfather Trilogy”, they debuted individually at Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas.These three were known by Gervais and Merchant as “The Fourth Season”. In October 2007 another free full-length podcast was released through iTunes, after being originally given out for free during a performance of Gervais’s Fame stand-up tour in London. On 25 November 2007 Gervais, Merchant and Pilkington released another free podcast of just over one hour.

In August 2008, Gervais, Merchant and Pilkington recorded their fifth series of audiobooks, totalling four chapters, which were released on 16 September 2008, and described as the ‘Guide To…’ series. As of May 2011, there are 12 ‘Guides’ to Medicine, Natural History, Arts, Philosophy, The English, Society, Law & Order, The Future, The Human Body, The Earth, The World Cup 2010, and Comic Relief. The conversations typically begin on topic and go out on tangents about other subjects.

In 2021, Gervais launched a paid-for audio series, Absolutely Mental, of his conversations with philosopher Sam Harris. Season 2 was also launched in 2021, followed by season 3 in March 2022.

Initially Gervais was most famous for the series The Office. The Office started when Stephen Merchant had to make his own short film while on a BBC production course. In August 1999 he made a docu-soap parody, set in an office, with help from Ash Atalla who was shown a 7-minute video called ‘The Seedy Boss’. Thus the character of David Brent was created. Merchant passed this tape on to the BBC’s Head of Entertainment Paul Jackson at the Edinburgh Fringe, who then passed it on to Head of Comedy Jon Plowman, who eventually commissioned a full-pilot script from Merchant and Gervais.

The first six-episode series of The Office aired in the UK in July and August 2001 to little fanfare or attention. Word-of-mouth, repeats, and DVDs helped spread the word, building up momentum and anticipation for the second series, also comprising six episodes. Following the success of The Office’s second series, Gervais was named the most powerful person in TV comedy by Radio Times.

In 2004, The Office won the Golden Globe Award for Best Television Series – Musical or Comedy as well as Best Actor – Television Series Musical or Comedy for Gervais, who said in a 2015 BBC interview that the award was the gateway to America for him.

The Office brand has since been remade for audiences in Sweden, France, Germany, Quebec, Brazil, Chile, The Czech Republic, Finland, India, Israel, Poland and the United States. Gervais and Merchant are producers of the American version, and they also co-wrote the episode “The Convict” for the show’s third season. Gervais has said that the episode “Training” is his favourite, where Brent plays his guitar and sings. In 2021, on the show’s 20th anniversary, he suggested the show would not have been produced in 2021 due to cancel culture: “I mean, now it would be cancelled. I’m looking forward to when they pick out one thing and try to cancel it. Someone said they might try to cancel it one day, and I say, ‘Good let them cancel it—I’ve been paid!’

Ricky also starred in a series called Extras. Extras had its debut on the BBC on 21 July 2005 and was directed by Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant. The sitcom ran for twelve episodes and starred Gervais as Andy Millman, a background artist. Millman is more self-aware and intentionally humorous than Gervais’s The Office character David Brent. Guest stars on the first series of Extras include Ross Kemp, Les Dennis, Patrick Stewart, Vinnie Jones, Samuel L. Jackson, Ben Stiller, Kate Winslet and Francesca Martinez. A second series began on 14 September 2006 in the UK and featured appearances by Daniel Radcliffe, Dame Diana Rigg, Orlando Bloom, Sir Ian McKellen, Chris Martin, Keith Chegwin, Robert Lindsay, Warwick Davis, Ronnie Corbett, Stephen Fry, Richard Briers, Patricia Potter, Sophia Myles, Moira Stuart, David Bowie, Robert De Niro and Jonathan Ross.

A Rolling Stone article remarks that in making Extras, Gervais was influenced by Larry David’s Curb Your Enthusiasm, particularly in the format of celebrities making fools of themselves or subverting their public personas. I might like to add that Gervais don’t shy away from a good old ‘roast’, something that some comedians do, like Don Rickles, when they take the piss out of another celebrity just for fun.

In 2007, Gervais won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series for his portrayal of Andy Millman in the second series of Extras. As Gervais was not present at the awards ceremony, the trophy was accepted on his behalf by Steve Carell, the actor who starred as regional manager Michael Scott—the counterpart to Gervais’s David Brent—on the American adaptation of The Office.

The Ricky Gervais Show is an animated TV show that debuted on US cable network HBO on 19 February 2010. In the UK, the first series began airing on 23 April 2010 on Channel 4. The show was developed using original podcast recordings from The Ricky Gervais Show starring Gervais, Stephen Merchant, and Karl Pilkington. After receiving an enthusiastic following in the US, HBO recommissioned the show for a second series, which aired in 2011, and a third series which started airing in April 2012.

Life’s Too Short began airing on BBC Two on 10 November 2011.Gervais and Stephen Merchant wrote this sitcom from an idea by Warwick Davis. It is described by Gervais as being about “the life of a showbiz dwarf” and as “a cross between Extras and The Office”. The show stars actor Davis playing a fictionalised version of himself, as well as Gervais and Merchant. Premium cable channel HBO, which co-produced the series with the BBC, had the US rights and began airing the series on 19 February 2012.

Another of creations was a show called An Idiot Abroad, a travel documentary where a reluctant Karl Pilkington travels around the world, with his reactions to people and places recorded. Occasionally, Gervais and Merchant call to surprise him with a new place to visit or task to do. Pilkington reports back mostly complaining about the situation. Gervais says there is no planning; a camera crew follows his friend around filming for many hours, which Gervais edits down to an hour each episode.

Two series and a Christmas special have aired; series one involves Pilkington visiting the Seven Wonders of the World. In the second show he chooses to complete tasks from a bucket list provided by Gervais and in the special Warwick Davis joins Pilkington on a journey following Marco Polo’s route from Italy to China.

In November 2011, Gervais filmed in London a 35-minute pilot episode for a potential comedy-drama series called Derek, which aired on Channel 4 on 12 April 2012.The pilot is solely written and directed by Gervais and features him in the title role of Derek Noakes, a 49-year-old retirement home worker, who “loves animals, Rolf Harris, Jesus, Deal or No Deal, Million Pound Drop, and Britain’s Got Talent.” The character first appeared in a 2001 Edinburgh Festival Fringe sketch as an aspiring comedian who loves animals and still lives with his mother. Gervais’s co-host Karl Pilkington makes his acting debut as Derek’s friend and facilities-caretaker Dougie who also works in the retirement home. British comedian Kerry Godliman plays Derek’s best friend Hannah and David Earl plays Kev.

Gervais said that the series is about “kindness [being] more important than anything else”. He added “It’s about the forgotten—everyone’s forgotten. It’s all these arbitrary people who didn’t know each other, and they’re in there now because they’re in the last years of their life. And it’s about the people who help them, who themselves are losers and have their own problems. It’s about a bunch of people with nothing, but making the most of it, and they’re together.” He chose to set the sitcom in a retirement home after he watched Secret Millionaire—”It was always these people with huge problems who were helping other people. I thought about having Derek help old people because no one cares about old people in this country … I think it’s perfect for now.”

On 9 May 2018, it was announced that Netflix had given a production order for the first season of the comedy drama After Life. It was created and directed by Gervais, who also starred in it and executive-produced it with Duncan Hayes, with Charlie Hanson as producer; the series premiered on 8 March 2019.On 3 April 2019, Netflix renewed the series for a second season, which launched on 24 April 2020.In May 2020 it was announced that Gervais had signed a new deal with Netflix, including a third season of After Life. Before the announcement Gervais said, “For the first time ever, I would do a series three, because the world’s so rich. I love the characters, I love all the actors in it, I love my character, I love the town, I love the themes… I love the dog!”

Gervais began his stand-up career in the late 1990s. His first successful show was at the Cafe Royal as part of the 2001 Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Titled Rubbernecker, it also featured Jimmy Carr, Robin Ince and Stephen Merchant.

Gervais toured the UK in 2003 with his stand-up show Animals. The Politics tour followed a year later. Both shows were recorded for release on DVD and television broadcast. The third part of the themed live trilogy, Fame, took place in 2007. It started in Glasgow in January and ended in Sheffield in April. Blackpool reported selling out of tickets within 45 minutes of them going on sale.

Ricky Gervais also does stand-up comedy, animation, he writes children’s books and is often a guest on talk shows and sometimes hosts the Golden Globe Awards, etc.

Gervais’s film career has included small roles as the voice of a pigeon, Bugsy, in 2005’s Valiant, as a studio executive in 2006’s For Your Consideration,as museum director Dr. McPhee in 2006’s Night at the Museum and its sequels Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian and Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb, and as “Ferdy the Fence” in the 2007 film Stardust.

Gervais starred in Ghost Town (2008) as a dentist who sees spirits, and was in Lowell, Massachusetts during May 2008 filming his next project, The Invention of Lying (2009), in which he starred alongside Jennifer Garner, Rob Lowe and Louis C.K.. The social comedy was co-written and co-directed by Gervais and Matt Robinson.

Gervais directed and starred in, Special Correspondents, which began filming in May 2015. The comedy stars Eric Bana as a journalist and Gervais as his assistant. They pretend to report news from a war torn country but in actuality they are safe in New York. The film was released on Netflix. Gervais directed and starred in the 2016 film David Brent: Life on the Road, a mockumentary following David Brent, a character first seen in The Office series, as he lives his dream of being a rockstar. On 5 November 2015 Gervais signed up to play Ika Chu, a villainous cat, in an animated film Paws of Fury: The Legend of Hank, originally known as Blazing Samurai. The movie is about a dog (Hank) played by Michael Cera, who wants to be a warrior and fights with Ika Chu for the town of Kakamucho.

Gervais has homes in Hampstead, London, and Marlow, Buckinghamshire. He also has an apartment in the Barbizon 63 building in New York City. He has been in a relationship with producer and author Jane Fallon since 1982, and says they chose not to marry because “there’s no point in us having an actual ceremony before the eyes of God because there is no God” or have children because they “didn’t fancy dedicating 16 years of [their] lives … and there are too many children, of course”.

He is a vegan, an atheist and a humanist, and states that he abandoned religion at the age of eight. In December 2010, he wrote an op-ed for The Wall Street Journal defending his atheism. He is an honorary associate of the UK’s National Secular Society and a patron of Humanists UK, a British charity that promotes the humanist worldview and campaigns for a secular state and on human rights issues. On 3 September 2019, he received the 2019 Richard Dawkins Award, which recognises people who proclaim “the values of secularism and rationalism, upholding scientific truths wherever it may lead.” Gervais received the award during a Centre for Inquiry-sponsored ceremony at London’s Troxy Theatre. Dawkins praised Gervais as a “witty hero of atheism and reason.”

Gervais is a fan of the UFC and Reading F.C. He is a music fan and has stated that his hero is David Bowie, with his favourite song being “Letter to Hermione”. He has also stated that his first experience of a live music gig was watching Iggy Pop. In 2013, he wrote that Lou Reed was “one of the greatest artists of our time” following Reed’s death.

Gervais is a fervent supporter of gay rights and has praised the introduction of same-sex marriage in England and Wales as “a victory for all of us”, saying “anything that promotes equality, promotes progress … You can’t take equality ‘too far’.”

Gervais joined Twitter in December 2009 when he first hosted the 66th Golden Globes. After a two-year hiatus, he returned to the platform in September 2011.In 2012, Gervais won a Shorty Award for Lifetime Achievement for his popular presence on social media. As of April 2022 he was followed by 14.7 million fans whom he calls ‘Twonks’.

Gervais uses social media to promote his work to his fans. After ten years he brought back his character Brent on his YouTube channel in a web series Learn Guitar with David Brent. He uses many ways to promote his new series, for example for Derek, he posts contests or questions for his fans.

Gervais uses social media to raise awareness of animal welfare. He tweets links to petitions to rescue animals from captivity, he highlights the plight of animals being used for testing, and he encourages people to adopt dogs instead of buying them from breeders. He won the Genesis Award from the Humane Society in March 2015 for his contribution to raising awareness for animal welfare on social media. In 2014, he was named most influential London Twitter user.

Gervais has cited Laurel & Hardy, Groucho Marx, Peter Cook, and Christopher Guest as significant influences.

Gervais is a supporter of animal rights and has stated that he will leave his fortune to animal charities. Gervais named an Asian black bear, also known as a moonbear, Derek after the protagonist from his series Derek. In December 2013, Gervais bought a $1000 cake shaped like a moonbear to raise funds for Animal Asia. Gervais is active in the prevention of illegal wildlife trade; he supported the handing over of ivory trinkets to the Metropolitan police in London.

In 2015, Gervais donated a signed acoustic guitar to help raise funds for Story Book Farm Primate Sanctuary in Ontario, Canada, with a special call-out to Pockets Warhol. The guitar which was signed by Gervais was purchased by Danny Young from the United Kingdom who has since had the guitar signed by several celebrities in order to raise further funds for the Story Book Farm Primate Sanctuary. Celebrities who signed the guitar include: Brian May, Will Ferrell, Bryan Cranston, Dhani Harrison, Peter Frampton, Ricky Warwick, and Steve Cutts.

In 2017, Gervais was awarded the Lord Houghton Award for Service to Animal Welfare from Animal Defenders International Gervais was also awarded the Humane Society International Cecil Award in 2018 for his frequent social media efforts to end trophy hunting.

Check him out (or not):

Sources: Wikipedia, YouTube, interweb, poetpas

Penelope

I watch the glistening stars
waiting for thy presence
thy brown eyes
a pulse through the universe
bound
connected
to ne’r be smothered
infinitely
Penelope

be mine

Everybody

everybody
wants to make a difference
but hardly anybody does

everybody
wants to be good
yet most of us feel bad

everybody
wants some change
whilst many of us fear it

everybody
wants to live
even though we die

Mother of fact

as a mother of fact
she kept
all her offspring
intact

she fed them
she bathed them
and kept them
in line

they all went
and crossed it
but we think
she’ll be fine

When but

when you think you had enough
but you get much less
when he talks way too much
but you always digress

when you think you’ve made it
but it was never broken
when a lot is discussed
but not much outspoken

when you’re blind to everything
but can hear all the rest
when you gave her a polygraph
but you failed the test

when you think you’ve found the one
but you run into the other
when you’ve found a way out
but you just won’t bother…

Bannockburn

arches flying
young lads dying
a lot of them bled
in a pool of red

swords swinging
bagpipes singing
horses charging
soldiers barging

English lots
a fair few Scots
with their pride
they turned the tide

Distraught

distraught
I was
I fought
my thoughts
my memories
of disagrees
worries
of fees
and foes
I suppose
I took
my time
and drank
some wine
emptied bottles
emptying me
distraught
I fought
I won
and now
I’m free

A pothole

a pit
created by traffic
weather
wear
and tear
gathers rain
this unpredictable pool
of tyre pain
housing an abundance
of grit
and grime
collected over time
an asphalt mole
in the road
a pothole

Oh spring

oh spring
with your colourful splendor
so vivid
a canvas full of
natural hues
so tender
an annual reprise
every time
you overwhelm me
and take me
by surprise

Baby bunny

new to life
fearless
yet frail
waggling
it’s tiny tail
freshly furred
brown ha(i)re(d)
and slightly scared
a baby bunny hops
on my grass
mixed with weeds
en masse
as birds sing
and bugs bug
the bunny
freezes
whilst an ugly orange cat
goes into stalking mode

I have to break up the party…

My dna

unwanted chains
impaired by strings
of twisted cells
and all it brings

good and evil
do their duty
mixed dark and light
entwined with beauty

my dna
can’t go away
inherited
is here to stay…

Manchester scareport

you queue
you queue
that’s all you do
they haven’t got a bloody clue

you wait
you wait
you might be late
to get in line for a busy gate

by the time
you do get through
there is yet
another queue

you queue and wait
for miles and miles
you end up nowhere
but with piles

little staff
tight security
I’m going home
I need to pee

Telephone 📞

often left
hanging
alone
wired
to a box
you used to listen to
many hellos
laughter
sadness
lies
and frequent goodbyes
whilst swallowing
coins
for money
used
and put down
you life saver
a sacRED shelter
in every other street
in town

~image by Simon Gradwell

April Fewl

April Fewl
was a prankster
who enjoyed
pulling legs
thinking it was cool
but came up short
when she met
her amputated man
who left her clueless
what to do
when he said:
You should’ve worn
your spectacles
before I married you…

First sun

first sun
what fun
no more depression
after spring
has sprung

april is here
flowers in gear
roses coming out
all the children
bloody shout

first sun
such fun
the rays are here
and the noise begun

Mrs Khan

Mrs Khan
had a nasty man
who hit her hard
with a frying pan

he made her weep
and make her sleep
outside with the mice
in a garbage can

she ran away
to the USA
moved to a town
it was called Bomb Bay

there she met
her soulmate me
who made her smile
and feel happy

Wild Will

Will
hit a rock
he was insulted
by a cock
he smacked
him in the gob
for being such
a knob

Will went back
to his chair
and proceeded
to swear
all this fuss
and his cuss
cause his wife
has no hair

Mother

conceive me
carry me
hold me
feed me
need me
raise me
appraise me

stroke me
pet me
affect me
trust me
support me
believe me
perceive me

slap me
confuse me
reject me
eject me
neglect me
excuse me
leave me
be…

Sad Saul

left by his wife
he had no friends
he had no life

he was allways on his phone
so he wouldn’t feel alone

he found an ally
in his screen
and a bit of self-esteem

Danny the Dalmatian

you’ve spotted me
said Danny
to the overlooking tree

you look
like you are thirsty
so I will kindly wet on thee

I also left you
a fragrance
to freshen up thy bark

so you smell nice
alone
in this landscape oh so stark

Your hairdresser

she knows
all your secrets
your ailments
and pain

she knows
you are human
and need
to complain

she listens
to the hokum
that you
wish to convey

right up to
the moment
when you
have to pay

No fly zone

a fly
couldn’t fly
in a zone
of his own
so he disguised himself
as a book
but his cover was blown

Your myth

your myth
created
puzzled
the pieces
laid out
by you
the parts
that I am
left
projected
right
in your brain
affected
mixed up
defected
are expected
to sustain

A courtyard of stone

an old man
playing a violin
devotes
his melancholy notes
to the sun
a blue sky
and a few birds
passing by
whilst forgotten chansons
echo off the walls
of shut shops
beneath a plane tree
almost alone
he brings tears
and joy
to a courtyard of stone

Women

perfect
creations
of a creative
god
creating
precious
pure
emotional
curvy
beings
shining
light
perpetually
yet sometimes
a tad whiny
perhaps regretfully

Reigns of sunshine

always here
always there
with sovereign strength
illuminating
at great length
dominating heat
we can’t beat
much longer
the reigns
of sunshine
are getting stronger

Stephen Fry sums up why social media sucks today

“We chattered and laughed and put the world to rights and shared thoughts sacred, silly and profane. But now the pool is stagnant. It is frothy with scum, clogged with weeds and littered with broken glass, sharp rocks and slimy rubbish. If you don’t watch yourself, with every move you’ll end up being gashed, broken, bruised or contused. Even if you negotiate the sharp rocks you’ll soon feel that too many people have peed in the pool for you to want to swim there any more. The fun is over.”

Comment clan

can I join
your comment clan?
I will be your biggest fan!

only nice things I shall write;
nothing critical
if that’s alright…

Stride

regarding my eventful stride
in the garden of perception
I ponder
and wonder
how I ended up
down yonder
believing fate
would caress my inner
conspicuous alteration
of thoughtful contemplation
that opens
and shuts shutters
of my ever vivid imagination

Mr Gullible

Mr Gullible
believed every little thing
was true

he believed
that every Indian
was a Sioux
every fuck
a screw
and semen
was glue
every lawyer
named Sue
all faeces
smelled of poo
every Monday
was blue
he could dance
in a canoe
karate
was Kung fu
instead of
Judo
or Jiu Jitsu
that Google
was Yahoo
dementia
deja vu
his expire
overdue
had to pee
at Waterloo
that Tim lived
in Buktu
all he made was gross
revenue
every street
an avenue
any woodland
caribou
and every rat
a kangaroo
a cock
a doodle-doo
every peek
a boo
Bart
was Holomew

Mr Gullible
believed every little thing
was true

Bowie

shining starman
galactic eyes
this lyrical labyrinth
his myth in disguise

fallen to earth
blessed with dark voice
his majestic apparel
and intellectual poise

shy oddity
golden hair
humble chameleon
with androgynous flair

magical star lit
in a theatrical maze
graciously styled
a visual daze

talented genius
majored in Tom
gracious Jones
my musical bomb

To the forest

rising damp
steam and smoke
misty sunlight
like a faded lamp
gazing upon dead wood
covering moist soil
the earth breathing
through snugly moss
trees waving
wandering gust

I should go to the forest
I really must…

What is the antonym for feminism?

Out of sheer curiosity I tried to find out what the antonym or opposite is of feminism.
Seldomly have I come across a more difficult task. Let it be clear that this is not a post where I feel the need to stick up for men.

First of all dictionaries seem to come with only negative antonyms like misogyny, masculism, anti-feminism, bigotry, chauvinism, sexism, cynicism, etc. (negative for/about men).

Let’s focus on the first one:
‘Misogyny is the opposite of feminism, holding the opposite sentiment towards women and their standing, not a parallel, holding the same sentiment towards men as feminism towards women.’

Another antonym defined, masculism: Advocacy of the rights of men; adherence to or promotion of opinions, values, etc., regarded as typical of men; (more generally) anti-feminism, machismo, according to Oxford dictionary.

These all have negative or disrespectful meanings in regard to women. And it
would mean that the antonyms of these antonyms or opposites (going back), thus feminism, would be or have to be also negative?

A professor came up with this:
“Male chauvinism. Since feminism calls for equal rights for women, male chauvinism calls for women to have fewer rights.
Masculism, then, is not an antonym.
Likewise, equality is a synonym, not an antonym!!!”

Equality a synonym for feminism? Isn’t feminism only for women’s rights?

Antonym.com came up with these words: make peace, stay in place, walk, pull, attract, best, worst??? Is that meant for women or men? Weird…
It would make sense in my country however as some women here tend to boss men around, no offence.

Now I am an egalitarian and I am working on my own witty word: equaligist
Yet these words are hardly known or used. That is a sad thing really.

What about men that stick up for themselves but respect respectful women. A malist? Again there is no such word.

Further on the matter there are discussions on forums like Quara. But often they involve personal opinions rather than plain definitions.

Anyway, I’ve come to the conclusion that feminism by feminists is regarded to be positive whilst the opposite for men is negative. Now how is that for equality…

We are expected

we are expected
to listen well
we are expected
to always tell
we are expected
to be good
we are expected
to eat our food
we are expected
to behave
we are expected
to be brave
we are expected
to be smart
we are expected
not to fart
we are expected
to be fine
we are expected
to stay in line
we are expected
to be kind
we are expected
to be refined
we are expected
to always care
we are expected
to be there
we are expected
to be on time
but I may show up a little later
as I am in need
of committing a crime

Witty word: Sweatheart

Definition for sweatheart
/ swet-hahrt /

Noun
1 either of a pair of lovers in relation to the other whereby one or both smell(s) of BO.

2 an affectionate or familiar term of address when hinting someone needs a shower:
“Hello sweathard, I can tell you’ve been to the gym”.

Informal.
a smelly friendly person.

Origin of sweatheart:
2021; poetpas; Modern English, based on late Middle English

Bipolar

2 gay bears
were dancing on ice,
playing a game,
rolling the dice

The ice began to melt
as the heat was on;
all the love they had felt
had sunk and was gone…

My beautiful English rose

she
was born
with many a thorn
prickly
yet blossoming
in my light
not to clamber
over yours truly
much to his delight

holding reds
fragrant and fresh
she stands firm
with puissant pose
now stuck
in me
I embrace her sting
my beautiful
English rose

Gene pool

mixed by
only a few
we are created
as off spring
amongst ourselves
in a small pool
of genes
by human
intervention
making us weak
not to mention
they did it
with every intention
just for money
not very funny

A Nonymous

A Nonymous
was a shy young man
who came up
with a perfect plan

bought a cabin
in the boonies
to keep away
from all the looneys

glued his postbox
shut the blinds
build a fence
and planted mines

he removed himself
from internet
and stayed at home
all day in bed

turned his phone off
night and day
and put a sign up:
“Stay Away!!”