I Grund Och Botten Är Vi Lika (At the bottom of things we are alike)

     Living in Sweden, as I do, I’ve often noticed that some idioms seem to capture an essence, are more powerful in Swedish than in my own tongue English and vice versa. Therefore, I’ve begun to take the liberty of borrowing the occasional Swedish idiom for use in my poetry.

 I Grund Och Botten (är vi lika)*

A Swedish idiom meaning At The Bottom Of Things (we are alike)


At the bottom of things: basically,

First and foremost and primarily

We are alike.

Our temperament, our gifts, our faults

May differ, and they do.

But you,

You are the same as me.

I is always you is we!

We are a race: a human race.

But should we race, erase the commonality

That binds us all? Of course not!

We are one in essence, which we got

At birth, perhaps before;

Sympathy, empathy, the virtues, vices;

All the aims a blend of spices

From self-sacrifice to merchandise;

Imprecise, but there at bottom

From the scrotum to the sputum.

All your systems are but symptoms.

At their end a blend of like-ness and uniqueness,

And one race.

 I Grund Och Botten 5.31.2018 Swedish Book; Nature Of & In Reality; Circling Round Reality; I Is Always You Is We; Arlene Nover Corwin







My I Is Always You


I have no secrets,

Every here revealed in each under-text

For you to find, identify

And see yourself in.

They are signals – call them semaphores.

Your world may not be mine,

Yet all the same, my mine is you

Though your existence is your own.


My I Is Always You (started) 11.26.2014(finished 10.31.2015)

I Is Always You Is We;

Arlene Corwin

I Thought That I Could Never Write A Novel 2008/2009

         I Thought That I Could Never Write A Novel

I thought that I could never write

A novel.

I suspect that what I scribble


a novel.  Novel, no, but universal –Variations on the themes

I sometimes understand as dull,

Experience as new.

An I that’s also you.

Subjective when the partial reigns,

Objective from a God’s-eye view.

A novel to be read as true;

An I that’s also always you.

© I Thought That I Could Never Write A Novel 2.14.2008

I is Always You Is We;

Arlene Corwin




Every Little Bit Helps 2008

            Every Little Bit Helps

Every little bit helps.

But if phrases

Sometimes fall into cliches, today’s

Cliche assists the passage

Onward, upward.


Sitting up in bed,

Pushing hard against a shelf


Gets triceps used,

The fat reduced –

The whole a little tighter

And a lighter day for me

Because of every

Bit of energy

That energy becomes.

© Every Little Bit Helps 9.14.2008

Circling Round Energy; I Is Always You Is We;

Arlene Corwin


Stopping The I 2009

           Stopping The I

When I was eight,

I read about

A man who stopped his use of I.

(he never uttered I again)

I read it in “Believe…Or Not”

It had to be

‘cause it was Ripley.

One struggles with the I:

Narcissus’ ego, vanity.

Write you, he, she, it, they, we, one.

You cannot hide.

It’s you projected –

Blindness rippling,

Lie unwitting.


To die

To vanity,


travel backTo I – when you are naked.

© Stopping The I 2.23.2009

Circling Round Vanities; I Is Always You Is We;

Arlene Corwin

It’s Always Readiness 2009

            It’s Always Readiness

You can tell who’s ready

(For a truth), who’s not.

You never push.

It [readiness] demands its rights –

however subtly.

Doors that open suddenly,

Pages read –

Our children targeted:

They are our goals,

Perhaps our mission.

Waiting for them,

You can tell who’s ready and who’s not.

Not pushing,

If you look you know.

© It’s Always Readiness 2.9.2009

Circling Round Reality; I Is Always You Is We; Love Relationships;

Arlene Corwin

If A Bad Man Believes 2009

       If A Bad Man Believes

If a bad man believes in God

He has the peace

That every good man has.

God doesn’t care – good/bad, bad/good


Just rewards –

Desserts that have their ground in faith.

It’s faith that counts.


What happens after,

I have no idea – but have


No clue,

But there are clues

To chains

That point to balance;

Clues to chains

That point

To resolution,

Clues that point to fixed results –


That do not end with death

But point to immortality,


For choices made

Not dying death.


Birth, death and an in between,

The constant chain.

© If A Bad man Believes 1.17.2009

Birth, Death & In Between; Circling Round Reality; Definitely Didactic;

I Is Always You Is We; Revelations Big & Small; To The Child Mystic;



By Your Works Ye Shall Be Known 2009

       By Your Works Ye Shall Be Known

If you want to know me

Read the poetry.

I’m there

Bare as marble.

© If You Want to Know Me 2.1.2009

I Is Always You Is We; Pure Nakedness;

Arlene Corwin

Confessions Of A Would-Be-Anything 2008

      Confessions Of A Would-Be-Anything

If not now, when then?

When the chore?

When the prayer?

When the meaningless

That may mean something

Sometime somewhere?

In the end and in the arts

It helps if there is lots (and lots).

Repetition that refines,

Accumulation that defines:

Ahead, behind – indelibility.

Mouth to mouth, age to age

From the recipe to sage,

From wheel to relativity,

From Vedas to the dictionary,

Painted cave wall,

St. Paul’s, Sistine Chapel –

If I do not do it now

What chance for lasting glory?

Mankind’s story

Told from womb, hands, mouth?

First –

To get the leg

Out of the bed.

©Confessions Of A Would-Be-Anything 2.10.2008

The Processes:Creative,Thinking, Meditative; I Is Always You Is We;

Arlene Corwin





Catching 2008


Contagious –

It’s all catching;

Everything to everything.

Monkeys, we

Create and re-create

In endless chains


In the smallest cell;





© Catching 4.8.2008

A Sense Of The Ridiculous; I is Always You Is We;

The Processes:Creative,Thinking, Meditative;

Arlene Corwin



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