Thursday, December 19, 2019


Ain't it just like the night to play tricks when you're tryin' to be so quiet ? We sit here stranded, though we're all doing our best to deny it And Louise holds a handful of rain, tempting you to defy it Lights flicker from the opposite loft In this room the heat pipes just cough The country music station plays soft But there's nothing really nothing to turn off Just Louise and her lover so entwined And these visions of Johanna that conquer my mind. In the empty lot where the ladies play blindman's bluff with the key chain And the all-night girls they whisper of escapades out on the D-train We can hear the night watchman click his flashlight Ask himself if it's him or them that's really insane Louise she's all right she's just near She's delicate and seems like the mirror But she just makes it all too concise and too clear That Johanna's not here The ghost of electricity howls in the bones of her face Where these visions of Johanna have now taken my place. Inside the museums, Infinity goes up on trial Voices echo this is what salvation must be like after a while But Mona Lisa musta had the highway blues You can tell by the way she smiles See the primitive wallflower frieze When the jelly-faced women all sneeze Hear the one with the mustache say, "Jeeze I can't find my knees." Oh, how can I explain ? It's so hard to get on And these visions of Johanna they kept me up past the dawn. The peddler now speaks to the countess who's pretending to care for him Saying, "Name me someone that's not a parasite and I'll go out and say a prayer for him." But like Louise always says "Ya can't look at much, can ya man." As she, herself prepares for him. And Madonna, she still has not showed We see this empty cage now corrode Where her cape of the stage once had flowed The fiddler, he now steps to the road He writes everything's been returned which was owed On the back of the fish truck that loads While my conscience explodes No one and nothing is the same And these visions of Johanna are now all that remain.
B. Dylan

Monday, December 16, 2019


I remember a Chinese shop on the Main               Street 
Of St. Ann's Bay,
 The various scents there, 
And shoppers on the make;

I remember Varanasi
With narrow streets and quads
And a place that sold ink drawings
Of Arhats, Buddhas and saints

I remember what you told me
As we walked between the walls
You pointed at the endless horizon
And taught how walls must fall

Beyond the deep horizon
In a city by the sea
We sat at the circle's centre
And spoke of a man of peace.

(C)2019 by W.G. Milne

Friday, December 13, 2019


I remember a Chinese shop on the Main               Street 
Of St. Ann's Bay,
 The various scents there, 
And shoppers on the make;

I remember Varanasi
With narrow streets and quads
And a place that sold ink drawings
Of Arhats, Buddhas and saints

I remember what you told me
As we walked between the walls
You pointed at the endless horizon
And taught how walls must fall

Beyond the deep horizon
In a city by the sea
We sat at the circle's centre
And spoke of a man of peace.

Monday, December 9, 2019

Sunday, December 1, 2019


The scenario where the story of this song occurs is a locked forensic unit of a hospital attached to a large university. Four of us are sitting in the hall, watching the nurses walk up and down. Three of us had been given a shot of Haldol in the ass. They could hardly move, but they could stare. I was less medicated, but stoned enough that I couldn't really walk. I stumbled along. When a particularly attractive nurse passed, I noticed that my bench mates were drooling. I tried to walk after one woman, but I couldn't catch her. "GOT ME A SOCIAL WORKER"

Friday, November 29, 2019



The mayor's missive:

        Now, you've got to understand I've been here a long time.
I've got my desk by mind/my window. OK, the window's plastic,
but you can still get a good idea of what's
going on outside.
             I'll tell you what's going on outside...NOT
MUCH. That's what's going on.
            And then Hank showed up...about five
weeks ago... I pretty much
had to take him in. No one else had the room 
or the inclination...He's one of those people
who most other folk dislike on sight...
 And the poor fool was too
stupid to get in out of the flies on his own... 
           Anyway, I'm used to the place and
my life is in some kind of weird equilibrium
which I do not want any fool to fuck up. 
            Some idiot is throwing off the
         I hear a noise across the bunker floor,
as if some large rodent is scratching away...
It turns out, of course, it's Hank: 
         "What are you looking for, you moron?"  I ask him.
        "Never mind," he says.
         "I DO mind - you sound like the Global
Village rats... that used to climb up and down
a wire basket by my head..."

           I"m looking for the MEANING!"...Hank says
to me.

          "OH,  oh...", is what I said.
          "Do you think the "Meaning" is more in that
corner... than it is anywhere else?"
I ask him...

           There was no answer.
           All I could see is the strobe-like flickering of
those nasty yellow candles  with black flecks in them...
Whoops.... now there's only one.
           It's almost dark now. That's fine with me.
You get used to the dark up here... 24 hours a day with
no electricity... After a while you get to like the dark.
I mean, what choice do you have? What choice do any of us have?
         The first couple of years were rough. But after
the 2nd year of unrelenting darkness, I got to like the
dark... The only place with light is Artie's (elegant) Bar And
Grill... now all he has is those yellow candles and a

          "I'm looking for my book on basic philosophy.."
says Hank.
          "What's basic philosophy?" I ask him.

           No sounds for fifteen minutes...once again... no light.
No interruptions in my train of through (which has
stopped being a "train" three years ago....) Now my
thoughts are more like fireflies on a balmy
evening somewhere around the 49th parallel. 
      ( Please  don't tell anybody
we ever had this conversation.  )        

            "Well, this Basic Philosophy" book
starts off with one statement..." Hank says.
         "?" I ask.
            It says:  "EITHER DO THIS, OR YOU'RE FUCKED!"

            "Ha!" I laugh,... "That's not a bad start...
I think I like this guy... what's the author's name?
Can you read it?"
            "Kuntz" Hank replies.

       "So you're crawling around on your hands and
knees naked in the corner looking for Kuntz?" I ask
him, trying not to snigger.
           "That's just about it," Hank says
I'm reading this guy KUNTz.
                    "I'll bet you are!"   (Har! HaR!)
                     Another 15 minutes of silence passes between us.

                         "Makes perfect sense to me." I snicker.
                         "Wasn't 'Kuntz' the guy in "Heart of Darkness"
by Conrad... or "Apocalypse Now"  by whojamacallit?"
            No answer from the rat frantically flipping pages
in the corner of the dark bunker, corner by the headboard
of his bed... headboard that doubles as a dartboard when
we have light... right now scrabbling in the locker
in the corner - sounds like three rats, or Godforbid!...
One Big Weasel...!"
             I can hear Hank panting heavily out of breath
in the dark... work on all fours is harder than it
looks... believe me, I know. I am used to all sorts
or Sordo-Circumstatial - stuff beneath the awareness
of what most people want to look at!

(????)       Whether sleeping or awake. I have done shit no one even wants to dream about in his weirdest hour... let alone actively pursue in the twilight of semi-consciousness. (????)
            (I have no idea what that last statement means.
But it has a certain ring to it, so I had to leave it in.)

            Maybe, this is what Kuntz means when he
says, "Do it my way, or else...."
          "Or else what?"
           "Or else die motherfucker...."  Is that it?  If so,
you got to give the man credit.... if you're going to
waste your time with rational  thought...
it's best to do philosophy with all the menace 
you can  'mount'(word?)...  manage...ministrate 
All the menace you can muster!

        Dear Lord, that's not the end of this story, is it?

Thursday, November 28, 2019


Your whole world of beauty              and mercy
With crystalline jewels in the
Taste of clear air in the                       mountains
Like the five trees that fail not
        in Paradise.

You give us a taste for the                  eternal
Help us yearn for evergreen              shores
And all of the seasons diurnal
We had this much, we wanted

And into the twilight evening
After a deep ego death
The indigo sky at twilight
Led to enlightenment.

(C)2019  by W.G. Milne

Sunday, November 24, 2019

THE FLOWER IN THE COURTYARD - plus comments from The Gnostic Gospels Group


plus comments from the Gnostic Gospels Group - Facebook


the deer hunter does not

see the mountains

the ambitious man does not

see men


lusting for societal position

I did not see

the flower in the courtyard

I hurried past my own heart                ***

The spring flowers, the autumn moon;
Summer breezes, winter snow.
If useless things do not clutter your mind,
You have the best days of your life.                               **
When you realise what the real is,
You will see we pass from one husk
to another
Like travellers stopping for
a night’s lodging. **
Only listen to the sound of
pines and cedars
When no wind stirs.
There are ten thousand paths to dawn
At the peak of the silver mountain.     ***
**  verse by Mumon
*** poem  by WGM
compilation and poem  (C)2015 by W.G. Milne

Walker Ballantine
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