Selected Works, Volume One On Sale
Jerry Prager, author of Legends of the Morgeti vol 1 &2 has published selections of poetry and prose from three of his previously published books, his blog The Well Versed Heart and unpublished works. On Sale at Macondo Books, the Bookshelf, in Guelph and the Eden Mills Writers Fest.
D'Etre Raisins

No sour grapes these,

rather the withered sweetness
of seasons lengthened
to aged fruition
chewed introspectively.

Saturday, April 26, 2014

The Symphonic River

The symphonic river plays both sides of the bridge,
the flow of the gathering descent softly erupts
in white cap resistance to submerged rock, a gentle,
reiterated resonance heard under the concrete road span,
the lyric arches on each side posted with listening chambers.

The downside fall over limestone ledge levels
are accented with cascades of plummeting scales
across last year's rushes and grasses, effervescent cadences,
improvised elucidations of gurgles and plops, whooshes, plunges and sprays
that whisper downstream and escape hearing:
variations of nuance layering the attenuated soundscapes,
isolating strains of melody from the air.

Too diverse for fixation, too alive for inattention,
the symphonic river plays both sides of the bridge
conducted by water levels over the bed of its movements,
themes of spring melt-flood, the solitudes of internalized winter
through the virtuosity of a single bend crossed by a country road
in a composition as long as the tributary's unfoldings.

And now, hours later, days later, an exuberant tranquility
continues to heal my inner ear - aching from the work
of mallet on chisel on stone - through nothing more than
memories of the hot sun of that sparkling afternoon alone on
a rural shoulder near Irvine Street farm fields, moments recalled,
like the cool shadows of the cedar-lined banks and the receding flood plains;
instants of the awakening Earth relived, like the chorus of insects
thrumming counterpoint to the rolling valley runoff
washing over me like a balm still, long after leaving
the lyric bridge and the symphonic river
and the glorious light of those fleeting impressions,
harnessed now to the page for the sake of spoken song
and the traces that you yourselves bring to the verses
of your own winter resolves.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Prayer for a Symbiotic Beyond

Lord, I am becoming alienated from common experience,
from the modern world, from politics I cannot stomach, religious leaders
I will not follow, promises I never trust, a culture I find malignant, malicious to its depths, a fallen spirit is consuming everything in its path behind its false face
marketing and its commercial shallows suffocating everything of grace and beauty.
It's not that I think I am alone without common cause, or that I am
especially unique, or particularly special; I am certainly no better than some
and less bad than others, but I cannot care about what passes for caring
in a world fixated on security, on the keeping of the wolf from the door
that opens only to me and mine: a world terrified of the other,
a state of affairs machinated into being
by masters of war and manufacturers of poverty.

I have no home Lord, not in a province becoming bungalow upon town house upon
neighbourhood upon subdivision, sprawl upon sprawl spreading like a virus,
the banality of evil subsuming woodlots, forests, creeks, streams, rivers, ponds:
the natural world of my childhood, eviscerated by the mundanities of sameness,
by streets that could be lost anywhere in North America, by big box plazas and
stores of identical looks and products and prices built on the wage slavery
of third world misery, places I refuse to enter, thresholds I refuse to cross,
profiteers I refuse to aid and abet, privateers whose crown charters should be revoked and their hold on the commerce of the commonwealth broken forever.

And I am just as alienated from my nation, Father. I was twelve when Canada celebrated
its first century, I came of age certain we would change the world for the better,
but now I find Canadians slouching towards our sesquicentennial
like the beast towards Bethlehem hoping to be born as a succubus
on the tar sands of Isengard, while the Just Society staggers
towards oblivion hand in hand with the Whore of Babylon
pimped by the minions of Mammon in Don Cherry jackets
and Harper hair-helmets rolling up the rim to lose ourselves
among the litter on the road to the hell of our best intentions.
Canada dismays me, betrays me, Lord
we have become a self-satisfied people
resting on the laurels of our predecessors, while
we surrender our rights and freedoms to oligarchs
coming for our water, our land and our air: debt enslaved,
we do what we are told, not because we are too polite to resist,
but because we bought into the low-end dream of 'nation as' beer ad;
more interested in the outcome of hockey games than in the natural world
about to evict our species for trashing the place. I have no home in the Canada
that is defined by a coffee chain named after a drunk driving Maple Leaf
who killed himself in a car crash; we have developed the souls of
fast food franchises, Lord whose products would actually prevent anyone from ever
becoming an Olympian if they lived off the crap that is served every day using
temporary foreign workers and dead end wage earners who can't feed, shelter or clothe themselves or their families on the pay they get from their billionaire bosses.
We pride ourselves as a nation on our compassion in times of global disasters Father,
but then refuse to face the realities of life for the disenfranchised
at home and around the world, we lack the courage to challenge the rich
and so sell out everyone below us on the food chain so that
the people who run the world don't take away what they allow us:
we are a nation of moral cowards, but this too shall pass.

And it will pass because You buried within us
the mutually beneficial creatures that humans are inexorably becoming.
Older generations like mine may be busy
dying into the husks of our lost causes, but the young are busy
being born into humanity's best shot at redemption;
because all the answers already exist, Sermon on the Mount answers
no more complex than the cooperative lessons of Sesame Street;
answers no more complicated than just enough people refusing to remain idle,
refusing to become prey of economic predation,
defying the ways and means of greed.

You know, better than I Father, that our young will arrive at the tipping point together,
inside or outside their boxes, crossing the single axle of time, in time,
because once tipped, nothing will be the same, ever,
and all that once seemed insurmountable will become history.
That is my hope, my trust; the remnant of my defiance:
some of the young will rise as we fall, they will cross the fulcrum
of Social Darwinism; and a small but significant portion will become other
in the heart beat of the evolutionary instant and after that,
they will raise their children as symbiotic lifeforms on a symbiotic planet;
as new creatures in a new creation, in a world without end. Amen.