Friday, July 29, 2011

path to unrequited

reaching for your palm of fingers
pulled to my aura, mouth to mouth,
breath coiled, 
trying to speak a 
                one word sentence, 
my pulse portends the dissidence
of your giving-in 
creating the magic of affection, 

truth be damned. 

Poem ©2011 R. Burnett Baker 
Photo taken by R. Baker at Corning Museum of Glass, Corning, NY.  
Glass sculpture titled "Atlantica", 1938/39 created by Sidney Waugh (1904-1963)
Atlantica is a 300 pound sculpture created for the 1939 New York World's Fair.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

A Summer Scene

wet heat

backswimmers skim 
a silky smooth 

the pond never 
feeling delicate 

on wet 

Poem ©2011 R. Burnett Baker 
Photo from Google Images. 

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Magpie Tales Photo Prompt 75: Tour de France

 Performance-enhancing drugs?  
Well, I did think there was 
 something slightly "off" during 
Lance's last ride in France.

 Maybe his tire pressure was 
just a bit low...

Text: R. Burnett Baker 
Photo provided by Tess Kincaid

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Yes It's Hot Here. Agony?: Perspective


from mountains
came calamity: 
rock, snow, trees - 
into valley lives, 
out of rivers deep 
          we sleep sleep
          and sleep. 

from myriad dreams
of creation's lust 
worlds spawn, 
          and thrust 
as dusky fragrance 
of heaven's pace 
torments visions 
          of black black 

this is our being, 
our minds, our 
a precipice of death 
and life 
never told. 
belief is cultured 
for hatreds and loss, 

for never seen 
dreams upon 
no man's 

Poem ©2011 R. Burnett Baker 

Friday, July 22, 2011

July Heat Wave

98.6 and rising 

our valleys 
a summer 
heatwave rises 
along the 
curves of 
your forest, 

my thirst 
quenched by 
rivers on

Poem ©2011 R. Burnett Baker 
Painting by G. Maria Blender

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Down Music Memory Lane

In 1963 we kids were delighted by the release of a Billboard number one hit song titled "Sukiyaki" recorded by Japanese singer Kyu Sakamoto.  Yesterday I found an old CD of the Hits Of '63 (don't ask!) in my car and wondered why I had it in the first place.  Then I remembered how I had searched for a few years for a copy of this song.

When the song came out we ALL sang the Japanese lyrics, even though we had no clue what they meant.  But it was a catchy tune and one that I think is timeless.  The title has absolutely nothing to do with the lyrics, and was chosen because it was short, sweet, Japanese and catchy to the American ear.  Figures, right?  Just thought I'd share it here today for no particular reason!

Kyu Sakamoto toured the US, and even appeared on the Steve Allen show in 1963.  Tragically he died in the single worst air crash on JAL 123 in 1985.  But the song lives on, as does, I'm sure his memory among his fans, and it's still a delight to hear!

The Lyrics:
Looking up while walking
Ue wo muite arukou

So the tears won't fall
Namida ga koborenai youni

Remebering those spring days
Omoidasu haru no hi

All alone at night
Hitoribocchi no yoru

Looking up while walking
Ue wo muite arukou

And counting the scattered stars
Nijinda hoshi wo kazoete

Remembering those summer days
Omoidasu natsu no hi

All alone at night
Hitoribocchi no yoru

Happiness lies above the clouds
Shiawase wa kumo no ue ni

Happiness lies above the sky
Shiawase wa sora no ue ni

Looking up while walking
Ue wo muite arukou

So the tears won't fall
Namida ga koborenai youni

Keep walking on, while crying
Naki nagara aruku

It's a lonely night
Hitoribocchi no yoru

Omoidasu aki no hi
Remembering those autumn days

Sadness is in the shadow of the stars
Kanashimi wa hoshi no kage ni

Sadness is in the shadow of the moon
Kanashimi wa tsuki no kage ni

Looking up while walking
Ue wo muite arukou

So the tears won't fall
Namida ga koborenai youni

Keep walking on, while crying
Naki nagara aruku

It's a lonely night
Hitoribocchi no yoru

It's a lonely night
Hitoribocchi no yoru

More info:   Sukiyaki_(song)

July 19, 2011

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Magpie Tales Photo Prompt 74: Image


in a trice
before sleep

eyes dream 
visions surreal, 
my persona 


Poem ©2011 R. Burnett Baker 
Photo courtesy of Tess Kincaid

Saturday, July 16, 2011


sanctuary again
         in bed 
         in sleep
         inside silence:

my bedroom door
the aegis 
from life 
damned life. 

Poem ©2006, 2011 R. Burnett Baker 
Artwork pastels by Ina Jean Garner.  

Monday, July 11, 2011

Magpie Tales Photo Prompt 73: Relevance

People of Chilmark, Thomas Hart Benton, 1920
Photo courtesy of Tess Kincaid


from the relevance of human experience 
to the relativity of human endeavor
love defines everything, even hatred. 

we need only to live its dimensions 
through moments of our lives, 
relative to the needs of ourselves 
and of others. 

Poem ©2011 R. Burnett Baker 
Adapted from an essay titled "Breaking The Dynastic Cycle:  China In An Interdependent World," by R. Baker, 1988, and 
a comment  by R. Baker 7-11-11 about love to a post titled "existence" by "citybouy"

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Observed Bliss: The Married Shoppers


aimless consumers  
       vacant minds 
       rootless desires
       empty pockets on 
credit spent: 

a man buys a  
      bamboo backscratcher 

his wife 
touch him 

Poem ©2007, 2011 R. Burnett Baker 
Photo borrowed from Google Images 
Poem from a collection titled "manic muse and other observations" by R. Baker, 2007. 

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Hell On Earth: The Defective Species Plods On...

This war.  That war.  This conflict. That one.  Uprisings, overthrows. "Arab Spring": (Bullshit).  Rape, pillage, and plunder daily.  Pirates.  Murder, more specifically getting away with it!  None of this madness will EVER end.  I'm not a pessimist:  Just being real.  I mean look around, read, watch, listen:  Can any of you really believe in the human race, this profoundly defective species?  

Yes, I know that many will say, "Oh but there's so much good to be found in the world, so many kind and decent people."  Yes, but are they actually making a difference?  Convince me.  Please. 
Related post:  "Defective". (Poem: "naked in the sand") April 4, 2009.

Artist: Chris Holden 

ghosts of the living 

destruction/creation may be the same force, 
but how to step beyond it all and rise above 
our defective nature? 

perhaps this human condition is that duality, 
and keeps us in the hell we attempt to relegate 
to an afterlife. 

atrocity is a vision,
a philosophy enjoined 
with human ghosts 
of the living. 

Poem ©2011 R. Burnett Baker 
Text  ©2011 R. Burnett Baker 

Monday, July 4, 2011

Magpie Tales Photo Prompt 72: Never Ending...

Photo courtesy of  Tess Kincaid

senzafine fields 

an artist's 
song of reason
beyond reason 
is never ending

senzafine fields of 

Poem ©2011 R. Burnett Baker 

Sunday, July 3, 2011

The Shower

Perseids Redux

there was 
that afternoon 
in tropical heat 
and stolen days 
we showered in 
minutes of love;

lying in the 
porcelain tub, with
nakedness surrounding 
every barrier, 
each whetted cleft
poured warmth 
like rain over 
meshed bodies of 
borrowed youth. 

Poem ©2011 R. Burnett Baker

Saturday, July 2, 2011

July 2, 1999

morning reflection 
12 years later: Remembering 
Poon Pak Keen, 1957-1999 

dark indoors against 
framed blue/green sunlight 
is not a preference but a 
necessity I can't consume 
at the moment.

I don't know 
why this form of silence 
is so compelling, but 
shrill typed words sometimes
make it so; 

leaning back - 
the chair - 
eyes closed - 
feeling my head 
throb in blood 
pumping staccato 
is oddly comforting, 
but hardly a 

Poem ©2011 R. Burnett Baker