Into the Pantheon

By Marcus D. Niski

How is it possible

to make it into the Pantheon?

Must the Gods

be pleased?

Infinitely so

I jest

But how are we to judge?

You must be the best and the worst I say

Lest you fail

the ultimate test:

For once you have

made it into the pantheon

there is surely no return.

[MN] 20 February 2003


By Marcus D. Niski

The inner clothes

we put on each morning

unbuttoned by night

adorned with useless circular landscapes


in cities prepared

near vast expanses

[MN] 22 July 1998


By Marcus D. Niski

The bronze houses without

windows or doors

become obelisks.

The butterfly hunter

with his hat

strode across the foyer

at a moment which anything

seemed possible…

[MN] n.d. November 1997

In Cocteau’s apartment

By Marcus D. Niski

In Cocteau’s apartment
There exists

An antique clock

A pile of notebooks
A picture of Picasso

A leopard skin drape

A clutch of pencils and ink wells
A pile of books letters and mementos

A faded blackboard

A bust of an unknown composer
Memorials to Colette

A strange engraving.

Above all, there is hope.

[MN] 29 December 1999

Roaming Around

By Marcus D. Niski

As a child
I would roam

Roaming around consisted of freedom

An essence of pleasure

I roamed around the streets
the creeks and gullies
the back blocks

through unfinished houses
through suburbia
through time and space

through mind and body
through disinhibition

through freedom of expression
through permission

to be free

[MN] 8 January 2019

Gas Station

By Marcus D. Niski

A slice of dying America

Immortalized in poems
by Bishop

paintings by Hopper

And the memories of
Millions of Americans

The allure of gas stations

Grease pits
Oil stands

Grease monkeys
Tools and tool draws
Parts and carburetors

The dreams of youth
And the machinery of movement

Gone the Golden Fleece
Of my childhood


Dead and dying

Like the generations
Basking in the dreams of

[MN] 9 January 2019

Charles Wright — The Vale of Soul-Making

I keep on thinking.
                                     If I sit here for long enough,
A line, one true line,
Will rise like some miraculous fish to the surface,
Brilliant and lithe in the late sunlight,
And offer itself into my hands.
I keep thinking that as the weeks go by,
                                                                         and the waters never change

Charles Wright, from “21,” Littlefoot: A Poem (Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 2007)

Charles Wright — The Vale of Soul-Making

Henri Michaux – La lettre dit encore… — BEAUTY WILL SAVE THE WORLD

…je vous écris de la Cité du Temps interrompu. La catastrophe lente ne s’achève pas. Notre vie s’écoule, notre vie s’amenuise et nous attendons encore « le moment qui repasse le mur ». Le vieux différend unit le frère au frère. Dans l’enceinte du froid tout le monde enfermé. Ceux qui possédaient possèdent sans plus […]

via Henri Michaux – La lettre dit encore… — BEAUTY WILL SAVE THE WORLD