You Can’t Escape Yourself 1989 2005 2006 2007


               You Can’t Escape Yourself

You’re getting bald. You say “Damn!

Why was I born to a family

Where the men lose their hair,

And the women get thin on the top?”

Desperate to make it stop

You change shampoo,

Taking hormones, selenium. You

Are too scared. It’s those genes.

You read health magazines, trying means

That cost dearly.

You’re fifty-three;

Time clock and family tree,

Dastardly, bastardly, lasting past ancestry

Quietly share in your hair and declare

That you’re called to be bald.

Bow, yield, accept! It is strong to accept.

Type those poems! Edit works!

Write without fits and jerks!

Send those letters! Stay fit!

Stop that coffee… “Oh, shit!

Where is the energy so sorely needed,

With sleep and rest coming out best?

Why is the good that I would…and etcetera too,

Just exactly the bad that I do?

But I’ve strayed, lost the meter. The poem is delayed.

It’s free form and discipline’s pros-e-try bent;

A poem ex-patriot: eye-form with content.

Content with that we can come back in a while,

Selves and the moment are never escapable.

Cause and effect the creators, create.

It’s never too late. We can wait,

Drape our fates in the work,

And be glad for our lot.



You Can’t Escape Yourself 89.8.6/05.9.30/06.12.31/07.2.24I Is Always You Is We; Pure Nakedness; Nature In & Of Reality;

The Processes: Creative, Thinking, Meditative;

Arlene Corwin




Writing On Napkins 2007

                Writing On Napkins

Have you ever penned a napkin,

Feeling felt tip pen fine pointed?

It’s like a painting –

But with alphabet:

So pretty – but semantic.

Worth a framing.

It inspires smaller stanzas,

Satisfying balanced spaced;

Felt tip pen and no erasures;

Like a water colorist,


But with message.

Have you ever penned a napkin


Embossed, absorbent?

No? Try it.

It’s an art form in itself.

©Writing On Napkins 07.1.27

A Sense Of The Ridiculous; The Processes: Creative, Thinking, Meditative;

Arlene Corwin

Winning Time 2007

               Winning Time

The eye bags cut away,

Smoothed out for six more years.

The almost-win

Whose only wish is winning time

With vanity’s “I’m seen” close second.

I don’t call that winning time.

A win

Is when

The tumor shrinks.

The central eye of God however,

Knowing no

Such thing as pinning time

To winning time,

The whole

A programmed pre-.

© Winning Time 07.10.12

Circling Round Reality; Time; A Sense Of The Ridiculous; Circling Round Vanities;

Arlene Corwin

Willing To Take The Time 2007

                Willing To Take The Time

Am I boring.

Harping on the themes

I see as ground;

To vanity,

To mind,

To time

And how the mind creates

While others talk of love,

(for Jesus was no fool)

And love is the umbrella sun of energy?


Still time, if not exactly tangible

Is not intangible:

We have our clocks to touch,

To see as hands go round.

We hear them tick,

We watch our watch.

It’s Time we cannot catch.


Bound to time and choice

Each mini-second;

Barriers of character,

(The carrier of barriers)

And karmic genes,

And strengths

With drives that yet push upward.


Oh, the complex and the simple,

The simple-but-not-easy;

Choices that demand we live;

Living that commands we choose.


Chain and ladder both-in-one

In time, in mind dualities, in love.


©Willing To Take The Time 12.2.2007

Circling Round Reality; Time; Circling Round Vanities;

Arlene Corwin





Why Titles 2007

                       Why Titles

I’ve figured out why I like titles.

Auden wrote without them. I can’t.

Titles are a mantra:

Phrase that pops into the head

As key to insight;

The abbreviation;

When you’ve gone, a reference.

As for me, the author,

Why the choice of poetry

When all one need do is explore,

Develop, deepen, say it?

Say it, without need for rhythm,

Certainly without a rhyme.

It must be genes, the DNA,

Memory that lies in Time,

The need to share,

And being clear

From sloth that rests

In the obscure.

©Why Titles 2.20.2007

The Processes: Creative, Thinking, Meditative;

Arlene Corwin

Who Peed On The Wheel Last Night? 2007

              Who Peed On The Wheel Last Night?

I thought that I was through with cat

Analysis and writings ‘bout…but

Yesterday I spied a cat – a beauty,

I must say –

Refined and white, really exquisite,


Sniffing someone’s tire; exposed

To being killed by someone driving by.

So focused.

Didn’t care.

“Who was it who was there?” her passion.

“Who peed on the wheel last night?

Someone I’m attracted to,

Or someone I should fight,

This pheromone phenomenon

My cherished motivation,

Giving all my nine lives meaning,

It’s experience religion?

Living, as I do, without reflection

In the moment’s abnegation of

A wrong or right,

My nose is in my brain and asking

Who peed on the wheel last night?

A simple question, which deserves

A simple answer. Oui?



©Who Peed On The Wheel Last Night? 07.3.21

Cat Book;

Arlene Corwin

Where Is The Winning Then? 2007

               Where Is The Winning Then?

I see it on the television: Win this, win that!

Read it in the magazine:

Win that, win this!

Offerings of things to win.

They do not know that Webster’s “win”

Is from the Latin venus, charm –(And charms are an illusion);

Old English’ winnan; struggle.


In the definitions lie connections’


To form

A universe of action.

Recovering from ore (as metal);

Preparation for its bed;

Gain as if in battle;

To obtain by work;

To get possession of, especially

By effort Hercules.

To be a victor as in war;

Accept oneself induced to wed;

And lastly,

To succeed.


Never does it mention getting,

Getting… getting…

Getting something

For a nothing.


Where is ‘winning’ then?


©Where Is The Winning Then? 07.9.2

Nature Of & In Reality; Our Times, Our Culture;

Arlene Corwin



Where 2007


So many deaths this summer;


It’s just a wonderment,

This where.It could be what becomes?

But ‘where’ feels better.

Ingmar Bergman, Antonioni –

Giant names


On the very same

Day, vying with

My mother in-law,

And two others in the family.

Not including all the millions

In the floods and fires and drought.

They are not naught, but

It’s too much to think about –

It brings it home

When those you’ve known and read about

Go where? all in a month.

©Where? 07.7.31

Birth, Death & In Between;

Arlene Corwin

When You’re Not At Home 2007

            When You’re Not At Home

When you’re not at home

I do my yoga, learn more tunes,

Play piano, listen to

The radio,

Write, edit, closing wounds

To grow,

Expressing sounds


No one hears but birds and cat

And God knows that.

When you’re at home

I fall into my housewife mode:

Planning meals, peeling onions,

Taking care to find your mood

Without intruding,

Asking what you’re feeling,

What you want, including

What you’d like to watch on TV.

I become good company.

A not-so-simple difference oui?

©When You’re Not At Home 07.5.3

A Sense Of The Ridiculous; Love Relationships; Circling Round Yoga;

Circling Round Woman;

Arlene Corwin

What You Were Born To Do 2007

               What You Were You Born To Do

What were you born to do?

Play like Art Tatum?

Paint like Rothke?

Carpent? Garden?

Be a twin to God-in-you?

Sixty-nine; these are the questions of the year.

Birthday once or everyday;

The days sincere, a birth to cheer.

You sense the thing that’s left to do.

You know the answers

Inside you.

One formal day to celebrate;

Day for everyone around to thank you –

Thank you for existing. But the rest –

Three hundred sixty-four –

Are days you do not calibrate.

This last year of a decade, leaving six behind:

Have you got the things you prayed for?

Have the sixty’s helped you find

The life you’re made for?

Sixty-nine: a leaving and a looking forward.

One more chance to start the new –

Do things you’re born to do.

Stay strong, and

Happy birthday all year long!

©What You Were Born To Do7.2.5

Birth, Death & In Between; Special People Special Occasions; Birthday Book;

Arlene Corwin

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