Sunday, February 8, 2015

One more

"On the paintings of Winston Churchill
------------------------------------------------
Yes, Plato had more in mind
he was unwilling to say to those
monstrous kings with their thousand ships:

the philosopher-poet, the painter-king,
or some other some-such combination
Aeschylus or Sophocles might have devised:

aspiring always toward Beauty, yet
gouging his eyes for Truth
or perhaps the reciprocal:

gazing upon a soldier on a beach,
wavering, knee-deep before he splendidly
collapses unable to see,

and a rejuvenated tree by the water,
growing out of the rocks,

and blowing, furiously, in the wind.

Saturday, February 7, 2015

It has been a long time... so here are some new poems

The Cloister of Paul

the problem with nutshells
he told me with heaving
expectant breaths from across
the glass, is not the delusion
of space (he cleared his throat)
that's not it at all

it's that all around (the walls
were once white but never
repainted) the infinite consumes
and cracks every firmament

thick tresses framed his face
with sweat (his hands shook)
and he leaned closer to the
immediate condensation

it is the constant threat
of some new deluge or else
a more terrifying promise

his eyes pierced the fog
before him (metal
clanged somewhere - he did
not hear it)

why, even the Christ himself
cracked his own shell twice (once
with groans, again
with tremors) before

returning to the air







Someday,
When my beard is more silver
     and my tongue has learned patience,
When my eyes become honest
     and my hands can stay close to my chest,
When I finally count myself less
     sinned against than sinning
(when that happens it won’t
     be a dimming of wit),
When I cease my injunctions to
     reason not the need
     as a beggar wrapped in kingly robes,
and no longer profess
     (between sculpted fragments and words) merit
     apart from its due,
and when the lowest branches
     along those Stygian shores
     are yet green in my eye,
I swear I’ll look back on all that I owe
     and surely by then, I’ll know
     how to repay all of my debts.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Another sonnet

For the past few weeks, I've been really into sonnet form - both reading and writing. I'll post some of my favorites soon, but here's one that I wrote recently:

**********

Streets
--------
I walked an unlit street that had no fences
but carefully stayed inside the concrete curb.
Although the silence never was disturbed,
it seemed unsafe to lower one's defenses.
And, having none for me to beg or borrow,
the stars each kept their light to just themselves.
The bells by the town square were chiming twelve;
I chose to tactfully contain my sorrows.
I asked my brother, and we changed our route.
The wind caught, and tossed, and lost a feather
wild and free, into that vapid darkness;
ominous, virulent, the night now starless:
we unraveled our thoughts together
cloistered on a balcony, looking out.


Also, watch this.

Friday, September 26, 2014

"Our Neighbor, Don"

I know I just posted a poem, but here's a sonnet that I wrote fairly recently.

********************

Our Neighbor, Don
------------------------
Our Neighbor, Don, could talk about the earth
as if the only problem was the weather,
and though he scarcely sends two thoughts together
on their way to subtle, aged truths,
Our Neighbor, Don, could talk about the worth
of simple things, as if there's nothing better
than sitting out on porches, just together,
forgetting - or not knowing - things uncouth.
I hoped I would not see him when I found
a certain word upon the wall we shared.
Some prophet scrawled his piece, and unprepared,
I tried to hide the things that he unwound:
Apathy and malice, wanton pride,
but mostly that these, too, were mine to hide.

Hello, internets - musings and poetry

So here we are. It has been about a year since the release of The Turing Test and this website has played almost no part whatsoever in aiding that along - anyone who has read the book will find that simple fact funny on multiple levels. Or, so I hope.
I find myself scratching my head, half-amused. What does one write in a blog of this sort? It seemed like such a forward thinking thing to do at the time that I made it. The book is out. Purchase a copy. Any questions?

Since finishing The Turing Test, my focus as a writer has shifted towards much shorter works, primarily poetry. So then, the question stands as follows: as a writer continues to write in such a manner, how does he move forward as an artist while giving due credence to his more robust past work? 

I'll be honest, and hopefully this comes as no surprise: I'm awful with computers. I don't like them, despite their obvious utility. One of my goals in life is to forget how to use them altogether. If, on my deathbed, I can legitimately say that I have learned to live in the 21st century without constantly consulting the glowing screen and tap-tap-tap of the keyboard for every little thing, then some remnant of primal humanity in me will have won out over the times, and I'll know that I've done something right. That kind of environment - the sting of fluorescent lighting while hooked up to some sort of life-support apparatus - should be reserved for those who are actually dying, rather than those who sit idly by letting life slip away from them. But then, maybe there's little difference. (The Onion posted an interesting story about that very topic, as a matter of fact.) However, and yes I realize the irony of it, I like the way this site looks. I think I'll keep it for now.

By the way, I still don't own a smart phone, and I use road maps on all my road trips. But, I digress.

For the time being at least, I intend to use this page as a platform for some of my poetry. If you like what you read, please consider supporting my work by purchasing a copy of The Turing Test.

The following is a poem about Emily Dickinson, one of my all-time favorite poets.

***********

Emily
-------------
Eternity is always now (time
is just the future:
the top of Dad's bookshelf,
a thousand weathered silver-
trimmed pages we'll never read -
or maybe someday) do you see it?
It's hard to reach.

I know a thousand amazing graces
at the top of (anyone can sing
them) notes laced in silver,
echoing backward to before the
setting sun Death
hides behind,
growing mushrooms.

She prays naked,
locked away,
dressed in white
before God and Death.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Updates

There have been several new developments lately.
First of all, my first novel, "The Turing Test," is now available for purchase! You can buy a copy at either of these locations:
https://www.createspace.com/3923360
https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/325528
(The Smashwords version is only an e-format, in case you've never visited their site before.)

Secondly, I also have a new short story available, called "Timeplane." You can find that on Smashwords as well, here:
https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/332444

And finally, the release party for "The Turing Test" is happening this Thursday! I look forward to being able to celebrate hard work with friends and family, as well as kick off the next stage of my life as a writer - shameless self-promotion! I might as well start that part now: buy a copy of my book? Please? You may even like it!

But in all seriousness, I sincerely hope that my offering to the literary world can be found by someone - anyone - to be something worthwhile, and beautiful: a window of new understanding into a chaotic world; a small piece of the infinite set in order. After all, that's what being an artist is all about, isn't it?

Friday, June 14, 2013

Hello, Internets!
I'm excited to announce to everyone that my first novel, The Turing Test, is not only finished, but ready to be released, and will be available for purchase sometime later this summer.
Just the other day, I held a copy of the finished product in my hand for the first time, and I must admit - it was pretty surreal to see something that I've invested so much of myself into, bound, corporealized, and ready to be sent out into the world.
In a few short weeks, you'll be able to find it, not just in paperback, but also in Kindle, Nook, and virtually every other kind of e-reader format you can think of.
So please, buy a copy, write a review, tell your friends, help spread the word .
Thanks a bunch, you people.
-Jon