poetry

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The Amputated Limbs Of Children

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Thu, 18/04/2024 - 11:04pm in

Tags 

Gaza, poem, poetry

Listen to a reading by Tim Foley:

https://medium.com/media/22303f9900408d23b08b7d10dd4fa5c3/href

“I want my legs back,” the girl cried in Arabic.
“I want my legs back.”

You can’t have your legs back, little girl.
They have been eaten by a hungry machine
who needs them for fuel to power its gears.

The machine needs your legs to keep the sky raining bombs
and to make its death robots fly.
Your legs power the bulldozers digging mass graves
and the tanks blowing holes in the hospitals.

A glorious kingdom is held together
by the amputated limbs of children.
A pentagon-shaped castle is built from the bones
of the amputated limbs of children.
Wall Street werewolves and bank boys dine
on the amputated limbs of children.
Movie stars treat their wrinkles with creams
made from the amputated limbs of children.
Suburban families prop up their smiles
with the amputated limbs of children.
The news man lies and in his eyes
you see the amputated limbs of children.
The podium man smirks and between his teeth
are the amputated limbs of children.

And the little girl cries,
and the news man ignores her,
and the podium man smirks at her,
and the bank boy bites her,
and the machine rolls on,
limbs fed into its furnace with pitchforks,
crushing houses and blackening the sky,
poisoning the oceans and bloodying the earth,
while the air fills with the crying of children,
for limbs that will never come back,
for homes that will never come back,
for mothers that will never come back,
for childhoods that will never come back,
for brightness that will never come back,
for innocence that will never come back,
for dreams that will never come back,
for joy that will never come back.

And we are here,
eating cheesy meatcarbs and watching funny haw-haws
and gossiping and prattling and wishing we looked better
and trying not to think about all the tiny arms and legs
we see covering the earth
whenever we step outside.

Afshin Rattansi on Twitter: ""I want my legs back"-11-year-old Palestinian girl Razan Muneer Arafat wakes up to find her legs amputated, after she was injured by US-UK-EU-armed Israeli airstrikesHorror such as this, given the all clear by the US-led 'rules-based order' https://t.co/L8g0N2eZxs pic.twitter.com/XGSBTTKkTJ / Twitter"

"I want my legs back"-11-year-old Palestinian girl Razan Muneer Arafat wakes up to find her legs amputated, after she was injured by US-UK-EU-armed Israeli airstrikesHorror such as this, given the all clear by the US-led 'rules-based order' https://t.co/L8g0N2eZxs pic.twitter.com/XGSBTTKkTJ

_____________

My work is entirely reader-supported, so if you enjoyed this piece here are some options where you can toss some money into my tip jar if you want to. Go here to find video versions of my articles. Go here to buy paperback editions of my writings from month to month. All my work is free to bootleg and use in any way, shape or form; republish it, translate it, use it on merchandise; whatever you want. The best way to make sure you see the stuff I publish is to subscribe to the mailing list on Substack, which will get you an email notification for everything I publish. All works co-authored with my husband Tim Foley.

Bitcoin donations: 1Ac7PCQXoQoLA9Sh8fhAgiU3PHA2EX5Zm2

Dancing Outside The Concentration Camp

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Sun, 07/04/2024 - 10:31am in

Tags 

Israel, poetry, poem, Gaza

Listen to a reading by Tim Foley:

https://medium.com/media/52bf56f685d10102416ef4ecc65647c0/href

Dancing outside the concentration camp,
rave music pounding through our bones like bombs.
A disco at the genocide, baby.
A disco at the genocide.

Twerking outside the open-air prison.
Raving while Gaza asphyxiates.
Twirling glow sticks while a Final Solution is planned.
Just an innocent bit of fun.

Chill out and dance outside the concentration camp.
What could possibly go wrong?
We’ve got the IDF looking after us.
They’d never let anything bad happen.

So dance while the Palestinians are squeezed to death.
Dance while the polar ice caps melt.
Dance while the oceans fill with plastic.
Dance while the rainforests disappear.
Dance while nuclear warheads are primed.
Dance while mothers scream impossible screams.
Dance while the arms industry reaps record profits.
Dance while fathers pick up pieces of their kids.
Dance while AI helps exterminate families.
Dance while Gazans dehydrate under rubble.
Dance while limbs are amputated without anaesthesia.
Dance while death machines patrol the sky.
Dance while the news man fills our heads with lies.
Dance while the podium man denies everything he sees.
Dance while the sharptooth manipulators scheme.
Dance while our minds are turned into machines.
Dance to the beat of imperial psytrance.
Dance to the beat of the Pentagon Polka.
What could possibly go wrong?

Dance outside the concentration camp.
A disco at the genocide, baby.
A disco at the genocide.

_________________

My work is entirely reader-supported, so if you enjoyed this piece here are some options where you can toss some money into my tip jar if you want to. Go here to find video versions of my articles. Go here to buy paperback editions of my writings from month to month. All my work is free to bootleg and use in any way, shape or form; republish it, translate it, use it on merchandise; whatever you want. The best way to make sure you see the stuff I publish is to subscribe to the mailing list on Substack, which will get you an email notification for everything I publish. All works co-authored with my husband Tim Foley.

Bitcoin donations: 1Ac7PCQXoQoLA9Sh8fhAgiU3PHA2EX5Zm2

Eugene Ostashevsky on the Holding Pattern of Revenge

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Wed, 03/04/2024 - 1:44am in

Tags 

poetry, War

In Episode 13 of Multi-Verse podcast, poet Eugene Ostashevsky reads five sonnets and talks with host Evangeline Riddiford Graham about mixing humor with horror and the stupidity of war....

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Who’s Afraid of the Large Language Model?

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Thu, 28/03/2024 - 3:17am in

Whether as a tool for human poets or as a poetic agenda of its own, language models might embody to the truest extent the collision of computer revolution and ancient poiesis....

Read More

An oath

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Fri, 15/03/2024 - 7:00am in

Tags 

poetry

The creep doesn’t creep into our shop, he’s all chest and strut, festooned with bait, he calls gifts Embrace Australia’s finest writers: subscribe to Meanjin Subscriptions start at just $5 a month — which goes directly towards our writers’ fees. SUBSCRIBE

I Don’t Need Guns I Need Fire Extinguishers

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Fri, 08/03/2024 - 11:34pm in

Tags 

poem, poetry

Listen to a reading by Tim Foley:

https://medium.com/media/5b51cba64c95fcb31f4653167e690572/href

Pointing pistols as the man burns,
as Gaza burns,
as civilization burns,
as the planet burns.
I don’t need guns
I need fire extinguishers.

Raytheon racketeers and Pentagon pimps
swollen fat from the blood of unnamed victims
glossed over in headlines by The New York Times
while National Guard troops patrol the New York subways
and babies with legs like toothpicks fill our screens.
Pouring arms into Israel
while humanitarian-LARPing aid airdrops.
Waving around armageddon weapons
while accusing peacemongers of treason.
Well sure I’d ask for seconds mister president sir,
but see I don’t need guns
I need fire extinguishers.

I need someone to put some fat back on those babies.
I need someone to get the plastic out of the oceans.
I need the bombs to stop and the siege to lift
and a healthy planet for the kids to play in.
I need kids to stop getting their limbs blown off
so they can run and play in that healthy world.
Can you drone strike me a thriving biosphere?
Can you ICBM those Gazans some food?
Can you extinguish this fire with your weapons and wars?
No?
Then get outta the way man.
We don’t need guns
we need fire extinguishers.

“Free Palestine,” the man on fire said.
“FREE PALESTINE!” he screamed.
And then the cops showed up with their guns and their bullets,
because of course they fucking did.
And Gaza still burns,
and the world still burns,
and our eyes still burn,
and our lungs still burn,
and our hearts still burn,
and our rage still burns,
and they promise us the burning will stop
if we just add in a few more guns.

We don’t need guns you stupid cop.
We need this burning world to heal.

_______________

My work is entirely reader-supported, so if you enjoyed this piece here are some options where you can toss some money into my tip jar if you want to. Go here to buy paperback editions of my writings from month to month. All my work is free to bootleg and use in any way, shape or form; republish it, translate it, use it on merchandise; whatever you want. The best way to make sure you see the stuff I publish is to subscribe to the mailing list on Substack, which will get you an email notification for everything I publish. All works co-authored with my husband Tim Foley.

Bitcoin donations: 1Ac7PCQXoQoLA9Sh8fhAgiU3PHA2EX5Zm2

Nine recommended reads for Women’s History Month 2024

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Mon, 04/03/2024 - 11:04pm in

To celebrate Women’s History Month 2024, LSE’s librarian for Gender Studies  Heather Dawson recommends nine books written by, and examining the lives of, inspiring women.

As LSE’s Gender Studies librarian, it is my great pleasure to introduce some of my highly recommended books from our collection for Women’s History Month. I hope you find them educational, thought-provoking and inspiring.

During March, look out for the links I will be posting on X and Instagram to other recommended resources available via LSE Library, including databases of articles and primary resources. LSE staff and students can book one-to-one advice sessions for further help researching women’s history resources.

Book cover of suffrage and the arts with an illustration of women suffragettesSuffrage and the Arts: Visual Culture, Politics and Enterprise. Miranda Garrett and Zoë Thomas (eds.). Bloomsbury. 2019. 

LSE is privileged to be the custodian of the magnificent Women’s Library, an archive which includes extensive materials relating to the struggle for the vote. My first choice highlights the way in which visual imagery was used as an important part of the campaign. It includes information on key organisations and discussion of creative art as an expression of protest.

 

book cover of art and suffrageArt and Suffrage: A Biographical Dictionary of Suffrage Artists. Elizabeth Crawford. Francis Boutle Publishers. 2018. 

For serious researchers of suffrage history, I would strongly recommend any of the reference works by Elizabeth Crawford as key starting points. Her latest book is an invaluable reference for tracing accurate information about the lives of women artists who supported the campaign for the vote in Britain. It also includes some fantastic photographs! You can explore some of the images on the LSE Library Digital Library, including a section on suffrage banners.

As Good As A Marriage The Anne Lister Diaries by Jill Liddington cover showing a portrait of Anne ListerAs Good as a Marriage: The Anne Lister Diaries, 1836-38. Jill Liddington. Manchester University Press. 2023.  

Another highlight of the women’s library collection is its selection of biographies of famous and inspiring women. Fans of the Gentleman Jack BBC TV series will be interested to know that we have recently obtained a copy of As Good As a Marriage, an annotated selection of excerpts from the diaries of Anne Lister, a landowner from Yorkshire considered by some as “the first modern lesbian.” This latest volume by historian Jill Liddington focuses on the Lister’s “marriage” to heiress Ann Walker whom she lived with in Shibden Hall, near Halifax. Hear Dr Liddington speak about the book at an event with LSE Library on Wednesday 20 March at 6.00pm.

The other emmeline book cover The story of emmeline pethick lawrenceThe Other Emmeline: The Story of Emmeline Pethick-Lawrence. Jane Grant. Francis Boutle Publishers. 2023. 

Another recent edition from a great friend of The Women’s Library, Jane Grant focuses on the life of Emmeline Pethick-Lawrence. In 2018 one of the LSE towers was renamed in her honour to recognise her contribution to the struggle for women’s suffrage.

The title refers to the fact that she is often overshadowed by her contemporary in the Women’s Social and Political Union, Emmeline Pankhurst. However, Pethick-Lawrence’s achievements, alongside her husband, in founding the newspaper Votes for Women and in continuing to campaign for equal rights for women during the 1920s and1930s as part of the leadership of the Women’s Freedom League should not be forgotten.

Eileen Power A woman in History Book cover A Woman in History: Eileen Power, 1889-1940. Maxine Berg. Cambridge University Press. 2023.

Of course, the collection includes biographies of famous LSE staff and alumni. A key example is that of economic historian Eileen Power who was appointed as a Chair in Economic History at LSE in 1931 and was influential in founding the Economic History Review journal as well as in developing children’s radio broadcasting on historical topics. As she died young, the most well-known biography of her life is now quite old, written by Maxine Berg.

Green Book Cover of Francesca Wade's Square HauntingSquare Haunting: Five Women, Freedom and London Between the Wars. Francesca Wade. Faber & Faber. 2020.

However, I was fascinated to see her included in a recent joint biography. Power is considered alongside Virginia Woolf, detective writer Dorothy L Sayers, classical scholar Jane Harrison, and modernist poet HD, who all lived nearby Mecklenburgh Square at some time from the 1920s to the 1950s. Find out more about their trailblazing (and often glamourous) lives in this recording from a 2020 LSE Library.

 

Angela Davis Autobopgrpahy with black and white photo of her and yellow backgroundAngela Davis: An Autobiography. Angela Y Davis. Hamish Hamilton. 2022. 

Our biographies concentrate on both well- and lesser-known figures. One which I personally recommend for her sheer endurance in the face of adversity is the renowned Angela Davis. Davis, an American political activist and academic has been involved in struggles faced by Black people, women and LGBTQ+ communities for decades.

 

Book cover of the Hindu bard poetry of Dorothy BonarjeeThe Hindu Bard: The Poetry of Dorothy “Dorf” Bonarjee. Dorothy Bonarjee (author) Mohini Gupta and Andrew Whitehead (eds.). Honno. 2023. 

A lesser-known figure I was astounded to discover via a BBC radio documentary was Dorothy “Dorf” Bonarjee: the first Asian woman to win the Bardic chair in 1914 for poetry at Eisteddfod, University College of Wales for verse submitted under a pseudonym. Her achievement was even more astonishing considering at the time women needed a chaperone to attend lectures. Examples of her poetry have been collected in this recent volume edited by Mohini Gupta and Andrew Whitehead.

Book cover of Kate Mosse's Warrior Queens & Quiet Revolutionaries purpleWarrior Queens & Quiet Revolutionaries: How Women (Also) Built the World. Kate Mosse. Mantle. 2022. 

Finally, I suggest Kate Mosse’s Warrior Queens & Quiet Revolutionaries. This is a good book to dip into to get a sense of the sheer number of influential women worldwide who made significant political, cultural and economic impacts during their lifetimes, but are now often overlooked. During this month, you can explore the padlet I will be developing based on the book’s selection of notable women.

 

Note: This reading list gives the views of the author and not the position of the LSE Review of Books blog, or of the London School of Economics.

 

Solo shows for 2024

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Fri, 01/03/2024 - 9:16pm in

I’m doing a few solo poetry shows this year, starting this month with Chester, Lincoln & Scarborough.

I’ll be in Falmouth, Totnes & Launceston in April. And Belfast & Dublin in October.

If you fancy coming along to a show, you can get tickets here: https://brianbilston.com/events/

When The Slaughter Stops In Gaza

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Tue, 27/02/2024 - 11:23pm in

Tags 

poem, Gaza, poetry

Listen to a reading by Caitlin Johnstone:

https://medium.com/media/5bf3a8ca7a8046ea103122ab8b1b15df/href

When the slaughter stops in Gaza
I will get to those cobwebs, promise,
and water that monstera,
and clean out that goo in the fridge.

When the slaughter stops in Gaza
I will youtube how to grow strawberries,
and whether dinosaurs ever had feathers,
and what’s the deal with hibachis — 
is it something to do with fondue?

When the slaughter stops in Gaza
I will brush my hair out finally,
and call my Mum god bless her
and make her a perfect lasagna — 
no, two; I’ll make one for freezing,
and I’ll give Dad back his drill.

When the slaughter stops in Gaza
I will teach myself ‘Nightswimming’,
and do a drawing of that face
that I took a pic of with my camera
in that packed tram in peak-hour
Back Before All This Happened,
and I’ll make some kind of cake.

When the slaughter stops in Gaza
I will sit with my love in our camp chairs,
our fingers entwined with our heart strings,
kicking coals awake til magpies
chortle “oh boy are you guys still up?”
and then I’ll let him give me an orgasm — 
the kind that rips through veils.

When the slaughter stops in Gaza
I’ll have my friend for dinner,
and we can watch her vampire show
and talk about her Dad
who died seven millennia and three lives ago
in September of 2023.

And we will lay upon the couch
our teeth stained black with wine,
and we will giggle about dumb things,
and one of us will fart
and the other will fall off the couch,
and it will be good and kind and sweet,
and not once will we see dead babies
or kids ripped from their mums,
or servicemen lit on fire
screaming “Free Palestine, FREE PALESTINE!”
and have our hearts thump in our mouths,
teeth clacking like a piano,
nails digging into flesh,
because everything is awful
and nothing makes sense,
and those men are so horrible,
and why won’t they stop them
and why won’t they stop them
and why won’t they stop
why won’t they stop

But until then, I will roll out of bed,
do a chore and eat a thing,
brush my teeth and drink some water
thump my chest and howl in sorrow
hug my babies, sniff their hair,
and get back in the fight.

________________

My work is entirely reader-supported, so if you enjoyed this piece here are some options where you can toss some money into my tip jar if you want to. Go here to buy paperback editions of my writings from month to month. All my work is free to bootleg and use in any way, shape or form; republish it, translate it, use it on merchandise; whatever you want. The best way to make sure you see the stuff I publish is to subscribe to the mailing list on Substack, which will get you an email notification for everything I publish. All works co-authored with my husband Tim Foley.

Bitcoin donations: 1Ac7PCQXoQoLA9Sh8fhAgiU3PHA2EX5Zm2

Feature image via Rawpixel (CC0 1.0 Universal)

The Real Me

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Fri, 02/02/2024 - 10:42am in

Tags 

poetry

You hear the rising sounds of the flocks. Afternoon waggles its tail with a little beat, tacky with hip sway. Kerchang, kerchang and we’re loose. But the leaves glinting the sun on your eye! Are you accusing me of some kind of attack? It’s the world tipping and we’re all hanging on underneath midday. The music’s got to that jangle stage, bottles dipping at the source. I only want to dance. With you on the side of the hill. Don’t raise your hand to your face. Just see through it all. I was you once. Of course, I’ll never know […]

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