Heidegger Looks at the Moon. Collected Poems by R.W. Haynes, Reviewed by Robin Ouzman Hislop


R.W.Haynes. Larado. Texas. USA.
 
Heidegger Looks at the Moon is the latest volume of poetry by RW Haynes, who is well known to us at PLT (Poetry Life & Times), where as well as having been Interviewed, his various previous works, as well his poems have been hosted. Haynes is an individual of many abilities, a scholar of Greek language, he is versed in the Classics, a playright, novelist, a biographer on the Texan Playright Hoorton Foote & poet, he teaches at A&M International University of Texas, Laredo, USA, where he’s been a lecturer for the last 30 years in Anglo Saxon Literature, Dramatics in Chaucer, Shakespeare & Ibsen’s plays amongst other activities.
 
It is not surprising, perhaps, that his poetics are in the classicist metric style and form. Almost inevitably, I find, we see, surrupetitiously appearing in verses a tightening of form in Shakespearean vogue. I think he will be the first one to admitt that he is almost in bondage to the sonnet and drawn by the fascination and challenge of being able to render a vast scope of vision into such a compact and condensed form. Also what we learn from Haynes is his overwhelming admiration for theater, but more so for the actual actors who perform theater, where he says, he literarily stands in awe and reverence of them as artists in their medium. I mention this because it is reflected, I believe, in his works as a poet, which introduces many varied persona as mediums for his poetic voice. Of course both history and place, he is from the deep south USA, figure extensively in his writing, an example features in his sonnet Downtown Waco. Midnight. Heidegger Looks at the Moon. In it’s opening line The Bush Library really ought to be here! Apparently Waco was on the list but it got removed to Dallas ‘The loss of the Library was the worst blow to hit the city since the 1953 Waco Tornado killed 114 people’ he comments in another text.
 
According to Haynes, as I understand it, he views emmotive conflicts as conditions of the human species over time as intrinsic to their existence, passion, love, hate, grief, despair from antiquity to the present he regards are fundamental in the human make up. And his poems intensifiy in a contemporary idiom and context this phenomena, sometimes with irony, sometimes with humour, sometimes with compassion. Having said all that, I would add, that his poems by no means make for easy reading, if the reader believes it can just pick up the volume and flipantly peruse it for a couple of hours and come away gratified, it’s in for another think. It is a work that you have to go back to again and again. These are poems that demand you give them attention, that you work at them, because in their own genre, they are masterfully crafted. I personally found in reading them, that just at the moment you feel most comfortable with the verses, stanzas, you are saying to yourself, yes I am with it, what appears to be a harmless snug line tucked away in a stanza rivets you with its complexity and plunges you into new depths, which is what a poem should do, imo.
 
The very title Heidegger Looks at the Moon, Heidegger is a complex philosopher and Haynes believes that poetry should be philosophical (in this I share his viewpoint) he believes in the etymology of the word Sophia, as the love of wisdom ( a hope, which I would also like to share in). Heidegger thought of humans as linguistic beings, language is the house of being, but he also feared that language could be our own entrapment, that the way we spoke about a certain object or event made it into what it was and also alienated us from what it really is. This of course is a great simplification but I think i could say that his concern was that instead of talking about nature, we end up only talking about ourselves, which prevents us from being activated, acted upon or impacted by anything, and in which we become the living dead to quote. This is only to say, without being specifically Heideggerian, if we are to think of philosophy (wisdom) as the task of poetry, it could be to awaken us from this anthropocene epoch, which sees the environment as its own, by the use of poetic language to recover the world which is ours and to which we belong. Haynes poetry in its idiom both ancient and modern, in it’s scope and intensity, it’s range of variety and mood, in its quest, is perhaps a kindling beacon towards that lost light. Editor Poetry Life and Times Robin Ouzman Hislop

 

Three Selected Poems:
 
(i.)
 
Downtown Waco. Midnight. Heidegger Looks at the Moon.
 
The Bush Library really should be here,
For each dead city needs a laugh or two,
A little something so the skeletons can jeer
On nights like this when there’s little to do
And nothing to haunt but the haunting lack of hope
Where words are born to sputter anxiously
Toward brief life in some half-bungled trope
Irrecoverable etymologically.
Is there another cyclone on its way
To re-mix this desperation here?
To make words and deeds mutually obey
A dim correspondence–never more clear
Than the misshapen moon cruising so high
Over the Brazos in the hopeless Waco sky?
 
(ii.)
 
Cleghorn Resists the Various Swirls of Evil
 
The preposition shudders politely when
A cutthroat solipsist invites it in,
And shyly declines his invitations
To join his murdered nominalizations,
His cold, intransitive redundancies
Pickled in glass, words that neither please
Nor move, motionless as the center of pain
In a sinking island sunk in a hurricane.
“Why, sir,” she whispers, “I didn’t mean to win,
But ever since William of Normandy came in
I’ve gathered force, and, alas, your frantic dream
To drown the world in a fantastic stream
Has withered, and you are no longer strong.
Believe me, sir, follow the lemmings along.”

 
So wrote Mr. Cleghorn, and saved his text
And closed his laptop, frowning a bit,
For greater labor awaited him next
And he was not yet composed for it.
Against his personal code of action,
He had slept in a red shirt, carelessly,
And he felt that invidious subtraction
Of force that accompanies inevitably
Such disregard for cosmic propriety
And leads to poor judgment both in poetry
And in the war of life, where certainly
Color sucks away sensitivity.
Dressed as clowns, thus, in Morpheus’ arms,
Sleeping fools multiply their harms.
 
And foolishness here is a rich resource,
He thought, reflecting on the bureaucrats
Who seek to keep the city down by force,
Predatory gangsters, scheming rats,
Networked against pressure from outside
To recognize justice and the Constitution,
To give up conspiracy, xenophobic pride,
Blackmail, bribery, theft, and pollution,
To exile the chiseler, the fake, and the buffoon
Who manufacture credentials from trash,
Grease the right palms (thank you, cousin!), and soon
Convert these shameless forgeries to cash
And smirk to think how the honest man’s labor
Buys electricity for his well-connected neighbor.
 
Growling bloodthirstily, three deadly wolves appear,
Greeting their master, emerging from his fit,
Three whom Cerberus would flee in fear,
Dire wolves indeed, as ever biscuit bit,
And Cleghorn calls all three ferocious creatures
And hauls them by the ears and roughly pets
Their shaggy coats, examining their features,
Claws, and fangs, and as each wolf gets
His morning greeting, he comfortably reposes
Himself in a strategic, warlike position
From which, no doubt, he fiercely proposes
To tear and mangle all opposition.
Thus, surrounded by three mighty dogs from Hell,
Their master meditates and speaks a secret spell.
 
Barricaded in eccentricity
Of a kind, alert to angel whisperings
And curious voices fluting delicately
Essences of many marvelous things,
He reaches toward a lost integrity
And hears the ghosts of long-lost harmony.
 
(iii.)
 
Meeting in Green Light
 
In that parade of corpses, one turned
To look at me. The green moonlight
Scorched her cadaverous face and burned
It greenish pale and deathly white.
Green fangs smirked familiarity,
And a sudden spark lit up one dead eye
As she hoarsely crooned, “Hey, babe, it’s me.
You used to say speed kills. That’s still a lie.
What kills you, fast or slow, is that you die.”
Cold inside, but this wrecked specter
Awakening some sad sympathy yet,
I croaked out in a stunned response to her:
“The alleyways and dungeons I forget,
For angels of sunlight dragged me out
And wrapped me with jasmine and morning glory,
And sweet dreams shifted my mind about,
To sacred miracles in a marvelous story.
They gave me cool white wine and cantaloupe
And pride was driven out by mindless hope.”
“So dogs do yap and howl in Heaven, then,”
She said and stared vindictively at me,
“Just as they do for burning devils when
The cold moon shines upon the murderous sea.”
“Perhaps,” I said, “but words one understands
Are ruled by a magic kept out of our hands,
And whippoorwills’ disturbing song at night
Fades out as nighthawks launch themselves for flight.”
 
 
 
Heidegger Looks at the Moon by R. W. Haynes
978-1-64662-686-1 www.finishinglinepress.com
 
 
R. W. Haynes, Professor of English at Texas A&M International University, has published poetry in many journals in the United States and in other countries.As an academic scholar, he specializes in British Renaissance literature, and he has also taught extensively in such areas as medieval thought, Southern literature, classical poetry, and writing. Since 1992, he has offered regular graduate and undergraduate courses in Shakespeare, as well as seminars in Ibsen, Chaucer, Spenser, rhetoric, and other topics. In 2004, Haynes met Texas playwright/screenwriter Horton Foote and has since become a leading scholar of that author’s remarkable oeuvre, publishing a book on Foote’s plays in 2010 and editing a collection of essays on his works in 2016. Haynes also writes plays and fiction. In 2016, he received the SCMLA Poetry Award ($500) at the South Central Modern Language Association Conference. In 2019, two collections of his poetry were published, Laredo Light (Cyberwit) and Let the Whales Escape (Finishing Line Press).
 
 
 
 
 
Robin Ouzman Hislop is Editor of Poetry Life and Times at Artvilla.com ; You may visit
Aquillrelle.com/Author Robin Ouzman Hislop about author & https://poetrylifeandtimes.com
See Robin performing his work Performance (University of Leeds)

Collected Poems Laredo Light by RW Haynes Press Release


 
 
We are pleased to introduce at PLT, RW Haynes recent volume of collected poems hailing from Laredo. It’s been our pleasure to publish a selection of Haynes’ works over the last few years, ( in case of interest view Search or Categories at this site ). He’s a poet with a canny and unique expertise in the craftmanship of the classical sonnet dating from the Renaissance poets and a master of the lyrical mode but absolutely written in contemporary vogue. At times profoundly reflective and self effacing they saunter from the wry and whimsical to the depths of inner movement, whilst harvesting at all times a spectacular vocabulary in accompaniment. Editor’s comment.
 
 
Southern Baptists Sponsor Stormy Daniels Forgiveness Tour
 
“It costs a lot of money to look this cheap.”

      –Dolly Parton

 
 
Brothers and sisters, we all have turned away
From the true path, but in our faith we know
We can return, though bled half-dry, although
In pain and shame for having run astray.
Judas, too, was born a child of light.
His mother saw in him how love arrives.
His kiss would guarantee that it survives
All storminess and darkness, shining bright.
And we also betray our closest friends
And sell ourselves and them with greedy minds
Until amazing grace assures that conscience finds
We have gone chasing after stupid ends.
And now, O brethren, it has come to pass
We’ve put our money on the wrong jackass.
 
 
 

R. W. Haynes, Professor of English at Texas A&M International University, writes various things in prose and in poetic form. His academic specialty is 16th-century England, but much of his work lately has been on the playwright/screenwriter Horton Foote. His poetry collections Laredo Light and Let the Whales Escape are being published this summer. He recently wrote a play titled Never Claim a Kill, and he hopes to complete his novel The Songs of Billy Bonstead before Laredo cools off again. Another project in progress is an academic work currently titled The Struggling Spirit in the Plays and Screenplays of Horton Foote.
 
 
 
 
 

Robin Ouzman Hislop is Editor of Poetry Life and Times ; his publications include
 
All the Babble of the Souk , Cartoon Molecules and Next Arrivals, collected poems, as well as translation of Guadalupe Grande´s La llave de niebla, as Key of Mist and the recently published Tesserae , a translation of Carmen Crespo´s Teselas.
 
You may visit Aquillrelle.com/Author Robin Ouzman Hislop about author. See Robin performing his work Performance (University of Leeds)

The Arrest of Mr. Kissy Face. Collected Poems by Mitchell Grabois. Press Release


 
The Arrest of Mr Kissy Face Mitchel Krockmalnik Grabois
 
M Krockmalnik Grabois is a poet extraodinaire, his works lucidly readable are delivered in a paced, snappy even raunchy style ranging from the common place mundane social to the seedy, slapstick macabre. Much of his writing follows the genre of narrator vignettes with the inevitable turn and twist closure punch lines that amorphize a mix of compassion with often hilarious black humor. Indeed, these poems are psychotic taking us to the verge of psychopathy where they compell the reader to a confrontation of her own humanity. A provocative and very recommendable read. For further works by Mitch Grabois see and search links below: Robin Ouzman Hislop Editor Poetry Life & Times, Artvilla.com, Motherbird.com
 
 
 
The Arrest of Mr. Kissy Face
 
I kissed the woman who slices lunch meat
at King Sooper’s
She shoved smoked turkey at me
leaned away
and called: Next!
 
I kissed my doctor
I’d been wanting to do it
since she first told me to stick out my tongue
and complemented me on its smoothness
and the elegance of my taste buds
I kissed her and she asked
On a scale of one to ten, how have you been feeling this week?
I kissed her again
Have you been seeing or hearing things that aren’t really there?
Have you been feeling suicidal or homicidal?

I kissed her more deeply
really sent my tongue to a remote locale
Do you have access to weapons?
 
I said:
How can you ask me that
after everything we’ve been through?
Anyway, this is America

 
She called Security
Security knew me
from the days when I was a high school football star
and an amateur boxer and cage fighter
who went by the moniker Destructo
They were afraid of me
called the cops
warned them: Be sure to bring your stun guns
your billy clubs
and chemical weapons

 
The first cop who entered the room—
I kissed her
She yelled FREEZE!
Hands where I can see them!
Get down on your knees!

 
I happily complied
 
 
 

 
 

Mitchell Krockmalnik Grabois
 
 
Mitchell Krockmalnik Grabois has had over fourteen-hundred of his poems and fictions appear in literary magazines in the U.S. and abroad, including quite a few in POETRY LIFE AND TIMES. He has been nominated for numerous prizes, and was awarded the 2017 Booranga Writers’ Centre (Australia) Prize for Fiction. His novel, Two-Headed Dog, based on his work as a clinical psychologist in a state hospital, is available for Kindle and Nook, or as a Print Edition . To see more of his work, google Mitchell Krockmalnik Grabois. He lives in Denver.

 

 
Robin Ouzman Hislop is Editor of Poetry Life and Times ; his publications include
 
All the Babble of the Souk , Cartoon Molecules and Next Arrivals, collected poems, as well as translation of Guadalupe Grande´s La llave de niebla, as Key of Mist and the recently published Tesserae , a translation of Carmen Crespo´s Teselas.
 
You may visit Aquillrelle.com/Author Robin Ouzman Hislop about author. See Robin performing his work Performance (University of Leeds)

 

Life and Opinions of Doctor BOP the Burnt-Out-Prof. Collected Poems by EM Schorb. Reviewed by Robin Ouzman Hislop

 
Excerpt from
Life and Opinions of Doctor BOP

 
A poem is a posit, an assertion, an act,
and in action we forget fear: respite
in creation, the maker takes a stand, in making,
but is it a stand no better than gimmick-makers make?
Well, poetry possesses the virtue of being a record,
at least, and you can date a poem, if you wish,
thus giving it the merit of a worldly fact
contained in a system of time, which, admittedly,
is a system which is perhaps pseudo-fact itself,
or will become so as matter completes its withdrawal
upon itself to revisit its beginnings in a black hole in space;
and yet, until then, something like a fact,
a fact in the sense that Sherlock Holmes is almost real
and lives in Baker Street in a fictional series
in a real world that may exist only in a dream
that is being dreamed elsewhere, perhaps—dare I say—
by Yahweh; and so poetry becomes an actual little stab
and, poets hope, rip in the black sheet
that covers the deserted, haunted mansion.
 
 
Reviewed at:
 
Amazon.co.uk Life and Opinions of Doctor BOP the Burnt-Out-Prof and Other Poems . See also Amazon.com
 
Amazon.co.uk Emanations from the Penumbra Poems EM Schorb See also: Amazon.com
 
Review of
Life and Opinions of Doctor BOP
by
Robin Ouzman Hislop (Editor of PLT)
 
 
Many poets often turn to playwrites, more so than the other way about, and undoubtedly, imo, EM Schorb’s early background in theater has led to his latest theme in poetics “Life and Opinions of Doctor BOP ( the Burnt – Out – Prof and other Poems)”. In fact, it seems to me, the entire text hovers between sketches, vignettes, and biographic autobiographical narration in the first person. As a European, but one who has followed, as well, with keen interest North Amercan academia in poetics. As much as philosophy, related to cosomology and evolutionary concerns in the new sciences. It comes as an edifying experience to be introduced to the home grown frantics of North American Campus life, or insomuch, the affect it has had on our character in question, Doctor BOP. Actually, in the reading of the first part of this three part volume, a practically epic poem consisting of some seventeen pages, I was strangely reminded of the later short story writings of JD Salinger’s depiction of University life as an undergraduate English lecturer. He was in fact, as he describes himself, a rather reclusive English lecturer. And one of his passages springs vividly to mind, as he mentions in a more or less autobiographical narration, how as a now muchly graying and aging professor, he hastily makes himself scarce, the moment a group or anything like of under 40’s looms on his horizon, (on the Campus). A far cry from the days of Catcher in the Rye, perhaps we might encounter our Doctor BOP, as Schorb portrays him, as having travelled a somewhat similar way, perhaps a universal way of all burnt-out-profs. At least for the birth of our Doctor BOP, as he emerges from the Yiddish community, where due to a series of social phenomena peculiar to North American modern history, he finds himself born into the world of academia at midriff with his family’s origin, social background and status. Here Schorb brings his own background knowledge of Yiddish custom and vocabulary into full play in all its richness, in the first part of the central theme to the work. It is but one of the literary treats he devises. The whole text is replete with a classical apotheosis, religious epitomes, literary analogues and philosophical allusions, all of which abound in the head of Doctor BOP, as he makes his final but defiant bow before the world. The poems obviously are tragico/comico, there is satire, irony, bitterness, humour and kindness blended together with eruditeness. The text is littered with phrases in Latin, Greek, Yiddish, Spanish, we even have augenblick (in the blink of an eye, or in the moment) for Hamlet in German, and of course, Orator fit, poeta nascitur, poeta nascitur, non fit. (A speaker is made, a poet is born, not made). According to Doctor BOP, who quotes extensively from bibliographies of writers past and present and salutes us in the final part of the first part with vaya con Dios, my Darlings. Doctor BOP makes a delightful read, which the two latter parts of this small volume only serve to embed, and is well worth the buy, if only to raise the dust from our minds to reminisce over our studious years and the host of miscellenious trivia that is the heritage of our race in all its travail – a poor player who struts and frets his hour upon the stage and then is heard no more – to coin yet another allusion.
 
 
 
Biography
 

 

E. M. Schorb attended New York University, where he fell in with a group of actors and became a professional actor. During this time, he attended several top-ranking drama schools, which led to industrial films and eventually into sales and business. He has remained in business on and off ever since, but started writing poetry when he was a teenager and has never stopped. His collection, Time and Fevers, was a 2007 recipient of an Eric Hoffer Award for Excellence in Independent Publishing and also won the “Writer’s Digest” Award for Self-Published Books in Poetry. An earlier collection, Murderer’s Day, was awarded the Verna Emery Poetry Prize and published by Purdue University Press. Other collections include Reflections in a Doubtful I, The Ideologues, The Journey, Manhattan Spleen: Prose Poems, 50 Poems, and The Poor Boy and Other Poems.
 
Schorb’s work has appeared widely in such journals as The Yale Review, The Southern Review, The Virginia Quarterly Review, The Chicago Review, The Sewanee Review, The American Scholar, and The Hudson Review.

 
At the Frankfurt Book Fair in 2000, his novel, Paradise Square, was the winner of the Grand Prize for fiction from the International eBook Award Foundation, and later, A Portable Chaos won the Eric Hoffer Award for Fiction in 2004.

 
Schorb has received fellowships from the Provincetown Fine Arts Work Center and the North Carolina Arts Council; grants from the Ludwig Vogelstein Foundation, the Carnegie Fund, Robert Rauschenberg & Change, Inc. (for drawings), and The Dramatists Guild, among others. He is a member of the Academy of American Poets, and the Poetry Society of America.

 
PRIZE-WINNING BOOKS
BY E.M. SCHORB
Books available at Amazon.com
_______________________________________
 
Dates and Dreams, Writer’s Digest International Self-
Published Book Award for Poetry, First Prize
 
Paradise Square, International eBook Award
Foundation, Grand Prize, Fiction, Frankfurt Book Fair
 
A Portable Chaos, The Eric Hoffer Award for Fiction,
First Prize
 
Murderer’s Day, Verna Emery Poetry Prize, Purdue
University Press
 

Time and Fevers, The Eric Hoffer Award for Poetry
and Writer’s Digest International Self-Published Book
Award for Poetry, each First Prize

 
 
 
 
 
Robin Ouzman Hislop is Editor of Poetry Life and Times his publications include All the Babble of the Souk and Cartoon Molecules collected poems and Key of Mist the recently published Tesserae translations from Spanish poets Guadalupe Grande and Carmen Crespo visit Aquillrelle.com/Author Robin Ouzman Hislop about author. See Robin performing his work Performance (University of Leeds) and his latest Collected Poems Volume at Next-Arrivals