Fundamental Misunderstanding

Jim Culleny

Jim Culleny is the Poetry Editor of 3 Quarks Daily. Did regular radio commentary for about 10 years  and some for NPR on All Things Considered. Played and sang his way from rockabilly to jazz in numberless band permutations over a period too long to believe. Came to poetry through songwriting. Has had work published in The Third Muse Poetry Journal, the Christian Science Monitor and is presently making a living as project manager for an Architectural firm.

Fundamental Misunderstanding
…. — thoughts on Charlie Hebdo, etc.

everything ever written or said
everything drawn or played or sung
every headline that cried or bled
every fresco, every poem
everything wrung from our cranial sponge
every inky insult flung
every instrument ever made
every expletive blasted from lungs
every face on a canvas hung
every righteous canto prayed
…. that pounded the planks of heaven’s floor
every school Kalashnikov-sprayed
every smartass quote with bite
every thought of rich or poor
every Icarus grasping at height
…. whose waxy wings soon came apart
every joke and laugh and snort
every misbegotten poison dart
every sentiment or thing
…. that burst from brain’s well-tensioned spring
every surah, gospel or verse
every prayer that followed a hearse
every love, lost or won
every song and every hum

every murmuring merciful must
that reached the sky or bit the dust
are not of a glad or angry God
……………….but of life that thrusts
from inner to outer the stuff of us
.

by Jim Culleny
1/16/14