City In The Long Run

       City In The Long Run

 From countryside in Härryda*

I saw a movie on TV.

The New York City profile,

Upbeat risk in capital:

Bids and bets –

That’s what it is.

And when it fails, the city falls.

I saw it in the skyline light,

The slums become rich real estate,

The neighborhood where I come from

Become a slum.


The shifting forms a losing dream;

The wastes of tastes tossed in a barrel

Of supposèd fun that’s run

On money and its honey.


Foreseeable in all too much complexity.

The city must end up a ruin.

Remember Ozymandias?

The city-thought can never win.

How long is in the long run?


But of course I could be wrong.

The City 9.26.2012 Our Times, Our Culture II; Swedish Book; Arlene Corwin

*Härryda – a small town in Sweden

This Shifting Thing 2012

This Shifting Thing

This constantly shifting thing

We call the body.

(thing – no holy

thing – just thing which changes

by the hour,

flowering and wilting)

As I watch inside it,

Idolizing and despising,

Taking care,

Such futile care,

“Hypochondriacal” pops up where.

It’s doctored


Body for each weekday,

Wreck day,

Weak day,

To rinse out and cleanse

And without choice endure,

Racking the brain’s grey matter

In the search for what

Does not exist:

Something stable and unchanging;

Body poised

Which in a perfect world

Could go unnoticed.


With which to live

And not a stitch

Of truth.

This Shifting Thing 6.14.2012

A Sense Of The Ridiculous; Circling Round Nature; Nature Of & In Reality;

Arlene Corwin

Turning On The Mac 2013

Turning On The Mac


Turning on the Mac,

The first you see

Is universes in infinity;

Potential endless,

Births and dyings back to back.

They’re clever,

Those designers,

Wondrous, beautiful!

They’ve got me. I’m their customer


Caught in the potential put

Before me, every time

I lift the cover.

Turning On The Mac 2.13.2013 (found on a scrap 1.3.2012)

Circling Round Computers;

Arlene Corwin

No Background Music (revised) 2013

            No Background Music


There’ll be no background music then;

Valleys that refuse to sing,

Glens that ring out nothing –

Dales too. 



How to get used to the mute


No angel choir,

No Gabriel to tootie toot.

There being so much music

In the background –

Does that frighten you?               


There’ll be no background music then:

Just silence.  Then

Get used to it;

The drop of nothingness.

The stop, there being

So much tuneful noise?

Silence.  No soft speaking, singing.

Worlds sound-free, mute. quiet. 

How to get used to the silence,

I’m not sure,                 

(There being so much music in the background.)


No Background Music 2.11.2012/revised 6.3.2013

Vaguely About Music II; Birth Death & In Between II; Our Times, Our Culture II;

Arlene Corwin


City Without Stress 1997/revised 2013

A City Without Stress


I dreamed I was mayor of New York City.

I ran on the ticket of “Take Out The Stress –

Lower, eliminate, vote

For my program with “Yes, oh yes, yes!”

My platform and slogan was “Clean, Calm & Pretty”.

First came step one, aimed at the mess.

Involving each citizen doing his bitty:

Man-spit or dog shit,

Pink, speckled, brown

The only requirement “Look and bend down!”

Convinced that an ordered and temperate manliness

Follows with cleanliness,

Eye seeing everything back in its place,

Trash in the trashcan, litter in bin,

Flowers and trees in that space of decline,

I’d instruct all my staff of the joys

That result from the process of cutting out noise.

“Staff, I would plead, here’s the funding you need.

Restore the tranquility, quiet and poise

That has oozed from our town,

Brought the soul of this prospering lovely town down!”

Then I’d reward anyone in a queue

Who was willing to wait for an hour or two

When a bus or a train was that hour overdue.

A city unstressed could send waves

Of the best…

On the crest of a world full of pestilent knaves.


Corny or shallow, truism, dream:

A city unstressed is a powerhouse team.

In spite of our egos, in spite of our sorrows,

A city unstressed could de-poison tomorrows.


City Without Stress 1.18.1997 4.1.2012/revised 5.9.2013

(found in an old diary.  I must have been visiting Brooklyn, NY at the time)

Our Times, Our Culture II; Definitely Didactic; Circling Round Egos;

Arlene Corwin



All The Way From Sweden 2012

All The Way From Sweden


All the way from Sweden

I can’t help but natter on:

Poetry and

Jazz and


Flying there to meet you and present myself

Out of the question.


In my white

Room eating

Home-baked buttered roll with cheese,

Drinking cups of tea

To please my knife

And spoon and cup,

Eat, drinking up

While writing –

This because I like to share,

Not being able to transport myself

To where

You are.


Jazz: the art of improvising;

Mindfulness – a Zen.

The song a mantra/koan,

A yogic thing one ought to do

While in the bath,

While on the road, in bed

Or looking through the window

At a cloud:

Everything and anything a jazz.


Life: the distance

Between seconds,

Record kept inside your cells

And held there

All the years of breath,

The is your wealth

In  action.


All The Way From Sweden 4.18.2012

Vaguely About Music II; Swedish Book;

Arlene Corwin

Fun 2 2012

Fun Is Not Fun 2


It isn’t fun to look for fun,

For in the long run fun’s

A smokescreen, hiding place;

Base of base, a waste (of time).

Thwarted when it doesn’t come,

This, written for the one

Who lives on fun,

But never thrives,

Who’s often bored

And looking forward, never in the now;

Who doesn’t know

That everything is fine

And fun


Without looking.


Not fun to cook up fun;

A camouflage,

The taste, in time

A heavy tome.

It doesn’t come,

To one

Who lives for fun,

Who’s often bored out of his head.

Gets drunk instead

(Which isn’t fun).

He doesn’t know

That everything is fine

And fun


Without looking.


Fun 11.18.2012

A Sense Of The Ridiculous; Definitely Didactic;

Arlene Corwin





When You’re Nearing Eighty 2012/2013

When One Is Nearing Eighty


New, strange openings

Among the closings.


Approval and esteem.

Fear of death, but loss of fear –

Ever nearing understanding of the dying

And accepting.

Few opinions, no opinion –

All opinions having worth;

Judgment gone.

It’s all one wealth.

You, in short are leaving earth

Relatively soon

Leaving earth to earthlings

And their generation.

Still, you’re far from free-complete.

Even you know that.

And hoping that you’ll live to conquer

Every trait that keeps you back

From fullness.


When One Is Nearing Eighty 12.31.2012/2013

Birth, Death & In Between II; Circling Round Reality;

I Is Always We Is You;

Arlene Corwin




2012 in review Arlene Corwin Poetry have-a-look

The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The new Boeing 787 Dreamliner can carry about 250 passengers. This blog was viewed about 1,500 times in 2012. If it were a Dreamliner, it would take about 6 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

Little Steps 2012

Little Steps


Little steps taken alone:

Small moves in isolation;

Growth, progress, all in

Small steps – no hops; the way to concentration,

Higher being, deeper seeing

And the soundest system

To self-wisdom.


With little more to say, small obstacles still in the way,

Not much elucidates the matter better.

Later what’s in store

Is written in the letter

Of the law

of karma:

Chance and luck and ambience,

All in the chain of cause/effect;

Destiny determined, radiated

By decision, persons and location.


Little is by small degrees – but gets there.

Little has a small effect – but gets there.

Little sounds like trivial.

It isn’t.

Little has a goal

and gets where

We’re all headed for sooner

Or later.


Small Steps 12.29.2012

Definitely Didactic; Circling Round Reality;

Arlene Corwin



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