Saturday, August 21, 2004

(7 sonnets) RED, BLUE, and WHITE ... um, BLACK {smile}




RHETORICAL VERSE /
SEVEN (software-verifiable) SHAKESPEAREAN-FORM SONNETS
and ONE HAIKU



{ACS.113_01} IF REDS AND BLUES EAT BULLSHIT,
who remains
{ACS.113_02} for you to speak to? How about TEAM WHITE --
{ACS.113_03} or BLACK, as I prefer. This team disdains
{ACS.113_04} the choices offered. Rather fly a kite ...

{ACS.113_05} ... than vote. How large is our team?
Red plus Blue.
{ACS.113_06} Yes, Black team's twice as big as Blue or Red.
{ACS.113_07} And Black is very much the smarter hue --
{ACS.113_08} we will not vote for those who have misled.

{ACS.113_09} If someday bullshit stops, perhaps we will.
{ACS.113_10} But now we won't pretend that voting counts.
{ACS.113_11} We won't legitimate the game until
{ACS.113_12} you give us choices who will each renounce ...

{ACS.113_13} ... all bullshit and run news-heads off the stage.
{ACS.113_14} Have real debate where you face
cheers and rage.


{ACS.114_01} WHILE WE THE BLACK TEAM
sit BUSH/KERRY out
{ACS.114_02} and thereby tell the world they're not all bad
{ACS.114_03} (by our act of refusal leave some doubt
{ACS.114_04} America is not completely mad), ...

{ACS.114_05} ... LET'S use our added leisure to review
{ACS.114_06} some hist'ry of democracy and see
{ACS.114_07} if we can figure out what we might do
{ACS.114_08} to let our nation be all it can be.

{ACS.114_09} Sports cam'ras are in Athens -- let them lead
{ACS.114_10} us to the same location. Set the range:
{ACS.114_11} from 5 0 8 to 3 2 2 is keyed
{ACS.114_12} into a BC keypad. By some strange ...

{ACS.114_13} ... anomaly our sight now spans those years
{ACS.114_14} when "demokratia" the world first hears.


{ACS.115_01} WE'VE ALL BEEN TOLD that
we don't have to think
{ACS.115_02} too long about the ancient Athens form
{ACS.115_03} of government. Yes slavery does stink,
{ACS.115_04} but don't let one big truth sink in the storm ...

{ACS.115_05} ... of our-time criticism. They had real
{ACS.115_06} democracy. The thing that "can't be done"
{ACS.115_07} we're told and told and told. But here's the deal:
{ACS.115_08} They had democracy. They made it run.

{ACS.115_09} REAL PEOPLE POWER balanced out elite
{ACS.115_10} authority. And bullshit couldn't win
{ACS.115_11} with no mass media repeat-repeat
{ACS.115_12} of noise all would believe. Though only men, ...

{ACS.115_13} ... the gathering of minds was face to face.
{ACS.115_14} Misleaders shouted down at any place.


{ACS.116_01} Yes, slavery was there, but look beyond
{ACS.116_02} that ugly feature to what we can learn.
{ACS.116_03} The pow'r to interactively respond.
{ACS.116_04} Not sitting silently if they should burn ...

{ACS.116_05} ... with outrage or approval. Hard to fool.
{ACS.116_06} Of course it happened, but no journalist
{ACS.116_07} was filtering the moment making cool
{ACS.116_08} or lukewarm, what is hot. Transmitting gist ...

{ACS.116_09} ... that's processed out the words
that might offend
{ACS.116_10} the sponsors -- letting bullshit take control.
{ACS.116_11} No TV mediation -- you attend
{ACS.116_12} to what is said, not what the latest poll ...

{ACS.116_13} ... has pigeonholed the meaning of it all
{ACS.116_14} into today. No, you must make the call.

{ACS.117_01} NO ONE IN ATHENS VOTED WHO HAD NOT
{ACS.117_02} HEARD FOR THEMSELVES
the arguments firsthand.
{ACS.117_03} The orators were few -- were on the spot
{ACS.117_04} to speak truth in that moment --
not what's canned.

{ACS.117_05} No teleprompter reading and no lies.
{ACS.117_06} How could they make good judgements
if the speech
{ACS.117_07} they heard was not the truth? The city dies
{ACS.117_08} if false advice prevails. Truth must impeach.

{ACS.117_09} Yes, it was understood "frank speech" was key
{ACS.117_10} for judgement of the people to be right.
{ACS.117_11} They knew that simple popularity
{ACS.117_12} was not enough -- they needed clearest sight ...

{ACS.117_13} ... especially when voting for a war.
{ACS.117_14} A time demanding frankness even more.


{ACS.118_01} FADE OUT on ancient Athens. FADE BACK IN
{ACS.118_02} TO SOMETIME IN THE FUTURE
where we've found
{ACS.118_03} a way to take the best that Athens men
{ACS.118_04} discovered, build technology around ...

{ACS.118_05} ... what worked. Adjusting as we mix our soul
{ACS.118_06} and our imagination to create
{ACS.118_07} more perfect union. Which is still the goal
{ACS.118_08} of this land RED/BLUE/WHITE/BLACK.
Let's debate ...

{ACS.118_09} ... within an old/new context that transcends
{ACS.118_10} the limits of the boxes we've been trapped
{ACS.118_11} in for too long. The TV cam'ra lens
{ACS.118_12} constrains our vision. Only when it's capped ...

{ACS.118_13} ... with something that allows the other side
{ACS.118_14} to flow back through it, can it be our guide.


{ACS.119_01} THE BUNNIES OF THE REVOLUTION hopped
{ACS.119_02} into the future onto a TV
{ACS.119_03} and found it dusty. With their tails they mopped
{ACS.119_04} a clean space to sit down and looked at me.

{ACS.119_05} The Necessary Angel floated by
{ACS.119_06} to disapprove all jokes with rabbit ears.
{ACS.119_07} The writer looked up stiffling one more sigh,
{ACS.119_08} marked out a line and left to buy some beers ...

{ACS.119_09} ... for BOKE who needs some energy to fuel
{ACS.119_10} a few more days of sonnets -- five or six.
{ACS.119_11} On TV Elvis singing "Don't Be Cruel"
{ACS.119_12} distracts The Bunnies from dispensing licks ...

{ACS.119_13} ... to BOKE's remote control that's sticky from
{ACS.119_14} some choc'late ice cream on his sliding thumb.

# # #


HAIKU CODA

There's too many things

we've been programmed to dismiss

with one damning word.