Featured Poem: “The Laughing Heart” – Charles Bukowski

Charles Bukowski –
The Laughing Heart

Bukowki’s poem gorgeously animated by Bradley Bell and read by the incomparable Tom Waits. Music by Grizzly Bear. Wow.

your life is your life
don’t let it be clubbed into dank submission.
be on the watch.
there are ways out.
there is a light somewhere.
it may not be much light but
it beats the darkness.
be on the watch.
the gods will offer you chances.
know them.
take them.
you can’t beat death but
you can beat death in life, sometimes.
and the more often you learn to do it,
the more light there will be.
your life is your life.
know it while you have it.
you are marvelous
the gods wait to delight
in you.

Featured Poem: “A Poem for Trapped Things” – John Wieners

This morning with a blue flame burning

this thing wings its way in.

Wind shakes the edges of its yellow being.

Gasping for breath.

Living for the instant.

Climbing up the black border of the window.

Why do you want out.

I sit in pain.

A red robe amid debris.

You bend and climb, extending antennae.

I know the butterfly is my soul

grown weak from battle.

A Giant fan on the back of

a beetle.

A caterpillar chrysalis that seeks

a new home apart from this room.

And will disappear from sight

at the pulling on invisible strings.

Yet so tenuous, so fine

this thing is, I am

sitting on the hard bed, we could

vanish from sight like the puff

off an invisible cigarette.

Furred chest, ragged silk under

wings beating against the glass

no one will open.

The blue diamonds on your back

are too beautiful to do

away with.

I watch you

all morning


With my hand over my mouth.

Featured Poem: “Quietness” – Rumi

Inside this new love, die.

Your way begins on the other side.

Become the sky.

Take an axe to the prison wall.


Walk out like someone suddenly born into color.

Do it now.

You’re covered with thick cloud.

Slide out the side. Die,

and be quiet. Quietness is the surest sign

that you’ve died.

Your old life was a frantic running

from silence.

The speechless full moon

comes out now.

Featured Poem: “The Spirit Likes to Dress Up Like This” – Mary Oliver

The spirit
likes to dress up like this:
ten fingers,
ten toes,

shoulders, and all the rest
at night
in the black branches,
in the morning

in the blue branches
of the world.
It could float, of course,
but would rather

plumb rough matter.
Airy and shapeless thing,
it needs
the metaphor of the body,

lime and appetite,
the oceanic fluids;
it needs the body’s world,

and imagination
and the dark hug of time,
and tangibility,

to be understood,
to be more than pure light
that burns
where no one is —

so it enters us —
in the morning
shines from brute comfort
like a stitch of lightning;

and at night
lights up the deep and wondrous
drownings of the body
like a star.

From her book Dream Work published in 1986.

You can find more from this Pulitzer Prize winning poet at http://www.poetryfoundation.org/bio/mary-oliver