Wednesday, June 9, 2021

renew anew

the next beginning
another restart
rekindled hopes and dream
aspirations, wish lists
and something about buckets

we navigate life
we negotiate with others
but mostly ourselves
trading off, always,
well, frequently
what we think we want
for what we think we want
this minute...

yeah, i used the royal we
the plural if you will
but honestly, truthfully,
it's all about me...

june 6, 2021

should be

i should be writing
by the cold clear
mountain brook
under my apple and
walnut trees

the brook exists
flowing from the mountain
top of my mind to the
fertile valley of my heart

the trees in the yard
of the house in which
my children were born

june 5, 2021

Thursday, April 29, 2021

the essence

you seem so... darn comfortable
comfortable in the very you of you
comfortable in the simple being you
making it so easy being content
being grounded and centered

it is in your aura
your well-tended modest garden
your two miniature collies
your home, the style and colors,
all seeming so... you.

it is what is, you are what are
there is nothing to covet here
its all part of the mindset
you never really set
it's some genetic blessing
or circumstantial behavioral thing
some psycho-spiritual blah blah
we all long for but never
quite in our grasp

perhaps the secret
is there is no secret
just stop grasping and...

april 29, 2021


masquera

never got it, really,
that whole veiled thing
women covered up
some ancient antiquated
neo-modernized

pandemically,
all of us now as chaste women
veiled demure and humble

and the eyes, oh my,
blue hazel brown and green
spirographed corneas
and focusing pupils
almond shaped lashed and browed
are indeed the oft' spoken
windows to our souls

this i get... finally.

april 21, 2021
the forest by the lake

Sunday, April 25, 2021

Return of the Muse

it is a poetic morning
with no clue why.
is it that the hard part
of spring is over?

is it the mesmer,
the slow numbing eddy
of this pan-demonic thing?

did i simply get
a good or perhaps bad
night's sleep?

was it something i et?
something i read?
a bit too much,
or not enough, drink?
was it this planet or that
confounding with some
other heavenly body?

ah, the mysteries abound...

april 17
albany park

write forth

i want to write
full-time, poetry, novels,
essays that change the world.
i want to... truly.

i want to so bad
i will make the time
create the opportunity
rearrange and plan.

i will make a schedule
up at dawn, eat, coffee
write
break, walk, coffee
write and lunch
cycle, correspond, last coffee
write then dine
read, write, and watch
and retire
sounds like a plan
right?

i will do it
i will adhere
dutifully
with great resolve
dedication
the best intent
for two maybe three
days.

then the days
turning quickly to daze
from gazing into
the abyss of boredom
caused by impatience
and servitude
to routine...

april 17, 2021
albany park

Thursday, April 22, 2021

An Armenian Lament: October 2020 and April 1915

 

Prelude

A son, a grandson,

Of this nation

My nation

Where I live

Only in my heart

Only in my soul.

 

There was or was not…

No, for sure there was

A city, a town,

A village

Many cities, towns,

And even more villages

In the highlands

The root, the very source,

Of my transplanted genes.

 

That village,

Those collective villages

Of our diasporan lot

Where but a meager few

Have ever been

Breathed the air

Sipped the water

Felt the soil, the rocks,

Beneath our feet.

 

Where we might have

Hunted, fished, tilled, and milled

Where we might have

Weaved, chopped, or hammered

A living of our own

In our own stores, shops, and schools

In our own land.

 

The villages

Maybe renamed

And changed

Villages that

Don’t know us

Could care less

Indifferent

To our returning

In pilgrimage

For a few days

Or hours.

 

Signs we were there

Mostly gone

Turned to rubble,

In urinals

Or barns

Used to build

The hovel homes of

Peasants, occupiers,

Victors

Grandsons

Great-grandsons

Of those

That kicked our asses

That kicked us out

Or made us… them.

 

It is from that

Imaginary altar

That altar, in my

Mind, soul, perhaps even

My American born liver

That I sing this song

In this foreign tongue

This great-grandson

Of Nishan and Mardin

This grandson

Of Levon and Aram

This son of Aram.

 

I.  Job of a Nation

In our mountains

Yes, our mountains,

Separated by dialects

Of our common language

And influences of

Being conquered

Of intermingled words

And genetic codes

We mish-moshed into

This collective thing

This defiance

This independence

This hate of being

Subjugated

Though we so often were.

 

This fierce independence

A drive to be more

To build and succeed

(not together mind you)

All which seemed to

Totally piss off

Everyone around us…

For centuries

 

We, tending to ourselves,

On our lands

In everyone’s way

And whatever

Their manifest destiny.

 

II.  The War

Repeat history

Sure, why not,

Blow up our old churches

Deface graves and stones

Displace people that

Lived there, again,

For centuries

 

Erase our facts

Our existence

It’s what you do

And have done

So very well.

 

What’s a building?

A statue?

Just things.

Our things, but,

Just things.

They are us

They are not us

Turn them to rubble

It’s what you do

So very well.

 

Don’t worry

Like the churches and schools

In the highlands

We have the photos

(Now videos too)

But as always, we keep them,

Etched or branded

In the broken, aching, hearts

Of all of us, every one of us,

Born there or

Wherever we have

Created a new Armenia

 

III. Tavadjaner

We need to blame

Ourselves

Well not all of us

We need

We must have

A traitor or three.

 

We were played

Putin taught us a lesson

As Stalin did

Again, over Kharabagh,

Nakhitchevan long gone.

 

Erdogan provided

The iron ladle

Of mercenaries

Of drones

Of command and control.

 

Forced to a treaty

The best we could do

Versus… what?

Annihilation?

 

So, our leaders are

What?  Traitors?

For being played, big time,

For being naïve

For shunning Putin

For lack of leadership

For our paper ladle

Peashooters vs drones

Conscripts and volunteers

Facing seasoned mercenaries?

Traitors indeed!

 

Sure, traitors, something

We can grumble about

For centuries.

 

IV.  Those still in the Highlands

My crypto brothers

My hidden sisters

Cousins and

Half Armenian

Half whatever

Part Muslim

Part Christian

A foot in the
Highland dock

The other in the

Diasporan Boat

 

We have nothing

But everything in common

To explore

To learn

To tolerate

To listen and share

And then what?

Part?

 

Çetin’s stoic

Joyful morose

Easter çorek baking

Heranuş

 

Hamşini Ayşenur

Singing sweetly

Songs Levon might have

Loved and danced to.

 

My father’s cousin

Somewhere

In Istanbul

Do you even know?

Are you even alive?

Do your children know?

Or care?

 

What about these Armenians

We or they or someone

Has labelled “crypto”

 

Children of the sword

Survivors of the sword

Indeed…

What a good culture

They got going there.

 

Don’t believe me?

Ask ‘em…

 

People of peace

And harmony

Of love and understanding

And Grey Wolves

And swords

And mercenaries

Armed with drones.

 

We had paper ladles…

 

IV.  1915

Incense wafting

Jingling into the air

Flowers cast onto a holy river

A simple handful of dirt.

 

Thousands thrown to die

Into Dudan near Çüngüş

Just a creviced

Bottomless cavern.

An entire village lies there.

 

Or souls burned in a church

The incense of charred flesh

The kushots of screams

Their ashes…

 

Stories upon stories

All different, all the same

Cut by swords, beheaded, or hanged

Cast clutching their babies

Into some river

You know the names…

 

Survival

Against the odds

The horrors

The blisters and burns

The tortures and whippings

The sites no one

Should ever see

Nor could ever forget

But for the dementia

Of old age… or death

 

V.  Confession

Me?

Like the rest

Sitting in diasporan

Comfort… suffering.

 

We wrote checks

Worried a lot

Cried, felt the gut punch,

Followed the news

And opinions, of course,

On tactics

On geopolitics

On who should be helping us…

Surprised and aghast

At what when down

In that agonizing month

 

We expressed

From afar

The pain, the anguish,

Of loss

Of yet, another defeat.

That is our history.

 

There should not be

Heroic songs for this one.

Can’t dress this defeat

This sad outcome

Up as any kind of win.

 

So, what then is this?

This almost a poem

This pathetic cathartic

Attempt at what?

I’m not even sure.

 

A flailing attempt

To say something

Anything that helps

Ease the anguish

We all feel?

 

That is exactly

What it is…


Megha Asdoudzo.

 

April 24, 2021

First published in the Armenian Weekly.