Skip to main content


Showing posts from 2021

What is Finnegans Wake? An Incompletion in Alphabetical Order

What is Finnegans Wake? An Incompletion in Alphabetical Order   Philip Harvey   This Incompletion is given with thanks to fellow members of the Finnegans Wake Reading Group in Melbourne. Many of the definitions derive from our discussions over the years, both in the room and on zoom. The quotes are from page 93 of ‘Finnegans Wake’, by James Joyce, with an introduction by Seamus Deane (Penguin, 1992).   1.      AN ANTHOLOGY FW is an anthology of world literature, sacred and profane, reworked into original English, without sourcing of any of the quotes, or an index. It is an anthology of proverbs and sayings turned inside out and back to front, so that their proverbiality becomes simply the lever, or the ghost writer, or the template for whatever proverb or saying is next being invented. It is an anthology of stories bowdlerized and pulverised and reorganised to make up one basic story told over and over until it burgeons exponentially into one big story. That big story is made u

How to Read John O’Donohue

  How to Read John O’Donohue   The writing of John O’Donohue is in pacific time.   It receives a great many queries. Consideration and processing can take several weeks.   Please be sure to give yourself plenty of lead time. In some cases this can increase the time needed to complete the process.   Some have asked to share their own experiences in relation to passing. They find that their own words fail them.   Remain faithful.   Navigate the revised universe. We find ourselves in response to those requests in the writing of John O’Donohue.   The writing created a page, a place for others to share thoughts and memories:   Name, Street Address, City, Province, Postal Code, Country.     Lines found on the permissions page of the John O’Donohue website. This work has been constructed according to the method of ‘remade found poetry’ in Annie Dillard’s book ‘Mornings Like This’ (1995).

Fan fiction 20: Andrew Marvell

To a green thought in a green shade my thought Returns unfurling beneath leaves’ lifetime Comfort zone. Teal, emerald, olive, lime Given and so imagined anew, resought. Down to earth depends branch, leaf and flower Day at the beach bikinis to beanies Night pollution hazes Gemini and Pisces Extinction news ignored by mere powers. To a green thought of another green world I can only summon thought of this world Eternal atmosphere unfurling unfurled Traced down to the watering-can fanned Over the garden on an acre of land And the seed packet scattered by hand.

Fan fiction 19: Alfred Tennyson

  Theirs not to reason why, theirs but to do And digitize print past into new norm The follies and wonders in microform, The lost in time and the much ado. Upper case and lower down to a dot … Into the valley of dots go all the words Their meanings immured, their tenses interred, Fresh longevity since newly begot. O firewall they price higher and higher! Saying who has access and who has not, Jolly plunder for the highest buyer. O subscription to civilisation! Canon to the right and canon what’s left, Search terms retrieving available rations.

Fan fiction 18: John Milton

They are servers who only stand and wait Post over land and ocean without rest Each singly. Thousands at their bidding pressed Speed send/receive. Their humans accelerate The in-tray workload, feed their programmed need Blindly task the flat screens’ fleeting shadows, Leave open still unread countless windows That hold old news in limbo and new links breed. The server, herewith their maker, presents Correct with useless information packed In daily scrolls clicks, feeble to prevent Morphed overload. Half-blind their humans bent At interface of this dark world are racked Considering how now their life is spent.

Fan fiction 17: T.S. Eliot

I have measured out my life in coffee spoons As others measure theirs in honeymoons. For some hairdryers, singing in choirs, Others are terminally frequent flyers. Life’s the credit column for bean counters The book shut hard when figures falter. Waiting for a word is a lover’s calendar; Time overflows, when not a colander. Each to their own, goes the stopwatch platitude, Winding the timepiece, setting the alarm, Pretending to adopt a zen attitude. Seconds may stretch to an eternity. Sonnets give an impression of calm charm Then press tender buttons of insanity.

Fan fiction 16: Joni Mitchell

  You don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone Sung cheerful as a yellow submarine Long-playing decades, the revolving scene Change Yourself Now becoming Once Upon. I am curious (yellow) to hear the song Heard a hundred times every note a line To another time when it was all mine And yours knowing what you’ve got, then it’s gone. It will be you and me inside the taxi The yellow taxi our lifetimes done Taken away, late last night. No maybe. Like this golden great tracking down the years We don’t know what we’ve got till it’s gone Listening again to its jokes and fears.

Fan fiction 15: Stephen Spender

I think continually of those who were truly great, My sixth-grade teacher, calm with numbers, time The basics of map contours, end-rhyme To a room of fifty. Didn’t hesitate. My history teacher too, the flaneur of crime A walking argument at the blackboard; In class, chalk was mightier than the sword, A Renaissance man in his own lunchtime. My medieval tutors’ future views Patient, their infinite preparations, Translating cribs into the latest news. And that teacher on whom I had a crush And others yet with fancy curricula/-ums. She asked me a question, made me blush.

Fan fiction 14: Basho

The frog fell into the pond drop-ker-plop. Frog made little impression this instance. Pond was out of its depth and all surface. Ripple scarcely made a ripple on top. Daily world continues serenity Sky sheen water abstracts green seeded scenes That night unblues to show world’s harsh careen Through high-tailed stars, black hole uncertainty. Drop-ker-plop. Clearly the subject is sex. Or gravity. Or levity. Theories abound. Theories splash down into a pond of texts. Concerts concern us, keyboards’ defiance Choral symphonies, the copies of sounds That reach our ears daily. Then, silence.

Fan fiction 13: William Wordsworth

I wandered lonely with my iCloud. Chimps and gorillas cannot compare Their brain a third the size despair And joy colour likewise, soft or loud. My iCloud is drawn, with density Rich and rare, towards like-minded mighties. We rise on horizons to a nicety Clusters of dream and electricity. Beware of substITutes imITations That pool and pronounce artificially! We know lost and found, memory’s fusions Personal from birth each separate way. They fracture, they bliss out officially Shared and shared alike on the grand old day.

Fan fiction 12: Homer

  The grey-eyed goddess is the grey-eyed goddess We meet at daybreak like it’s a new day. Rate this day against the usual array! Weight of desire, the wait of transgress, Everything shaping for a brand new spoil The reason trivial, typical, near: Land claim, male pride, beauty skin deep, feud fear. Hidden from sight she lets events uncoil. The wine dark sea is the wine dark sea We stare into drunk, stare into sober, The swell describing how warfare can be The turmoil that thrills, alienates and shifts; The race homeward ours too, over and over. The still, where ships wait for the wind to lift.

Fan fiction 11: Samuel Taylor Coleridge

A painted ship upon a painted ocean Turquoise tempestuous Turneresque trip. Eyeball fixed to zenith. Tremulous lip. Poppyseed concentrate blanks emotions: Wedding guests flying with mirth above Earth A bustle in their hedgerows oh don’t you see Killer robots infecting circuitry My albatross password tossed in the surf? Cosmic confectionery all swirled up, An emerald iceberg cake, a melting sun The sweet green icing flowing down, sorry up. I’ll have one of those and one of those Someone where’s the convenience someone Get a doctor I think I’ve overdosed.

Fan fiction 10: Stevie Smith

I was much too far out all my life Flamboyant language and jackets to match. My mind freed dragons when I lifted the latch, Ignored all advice on trouble and strife. When I was not downing I was watching The next round of drinks rolling into sight. Night was day at clubland and day was night. Anyone who had a heart was something. Feel the heat of summer’s cosmic knowledge! Now was the speed made me reel alive Not driving but wheeling close to the edge. Now is the need to stay out of the cold, Not dreaming but wanting that inner drive. Too young to die once, now here I am, old.  

Fan fiction 9: Percy Bysshe Shelley

Look on my works, ye mighty, and design Something better, titanic iceberg heights Of glistening city alight at nights Avalanche buildings in the dark. Incline Your blindside ego to sign off in oil, Ramp up more freeways running on empty; Your campaign slogan in gold ‘Don’t Tempt Me!’ Replenishes the thin silicon soil. Front your edifice with moonshot command Perpendicular in particular, Pigeons alone will twitter at your hand.   Inscribe the words tomorrow will pity, Contradict as enemy turns ruler, Leaving space for invaders’ graffiti.

Fan fiction 8: James Joyce

  History is a nightmare from which I Am trying to awake. A wake that I Repeat incomplete for me and for you, The uncomprehending unending you. Sending you best wishes, The Author. He Finds his tongue just in time, the very he Coping copying the reasons for she Who returns resists relates recurs. She Who turns cursed existence great; into we Awake comprehending that we are we; With reasons apprehending anew you – Others’ mothers fathers dreaming up you Who every day wakes gratis the world. They Read kaleidoscope grammar books of they.