Dannie Abse, The stethoscope

Medicine is one of the sciences, and here is a fine poem:

Roy Marshall

” I felt that poetry shouldn’t be an escape from reality, but rather an immersion into reality, and part of my reality was, indeed, my hospital life at the time. And so I became prepared to write poems which had medical undertones. Louis Pasteur once said (talking of scientific inspiration), ‘Chance favors the prepared mind,’ and my mind was prepared to write poems that were medically coloured.”  Dannie Abse , from a lecture and reading delivered by the poet at the NYU School of Medicine, April 8, 1999.

Page from Dannie Abse Collected poems 1948- 1976, Hutchinson Press, 1977.

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Extinction or Fly Home Martha

Something to ponder……

Cheyenne Alexandria Phillips

Hey everyone, I know that the New Year is coming up and usually it is a very happy time but I would like to take this opportunity to remind you that as we say Goodbye to 2017, we also say goodbye to many species that have lost their lives to habitat destruction, climate change and direct human impact. I hope in 2018, you vow to make personal changes that will ultimately positively affect the environment and keep the massive picture we know as Biodiversity intact. 

(or Fly Home Martha)

I once read
of how we lost
so much life that
we were never
able to revive it,
that regardless of efforts,
the impulse of
uneducated decisions
left empty spaces;
missing pieces of a jigsaw
we were still
proud to frame.
What would Martha say
about her hole,
her blemish?
She did what others
before her did

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An excellent poem using scientific imagery from Louis Faber:

an old writer and his words

We arose from water,
crawled forth and inhabited the land
and claimed dominion
and the land appeared
to cede itself to us,
knowing better
and caring even less.
We return to the water
feel its pull
but immerse ourselves
only partially, willing
to risk only half drowning,
the land and air
usually silent, knowingly
laugh for they know
that a fish
out of water
eventually drowns
in a sea of air.

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The blissful butterfly seems unconcerned,

while sipping nectar, flitting with its mate,

but it remembers everything it learned

when caterpillar seemed its only fate.


When it could only inch along and feed

to saturate its flesh with pungency

of bitter leaves – a deft defense, indeed,

from predators from whom it could not flee –

it literally was embittered by

its appetite and all that it consumed.

It never dreamt that one day it would fly.

While lacking wings, how could it have presumed?


Recalling its state before pupation,

its pulsing wings signal celebration.


by James Kotsybar

Originally published at https://causewaylit.com/masons-road-2/issue-11-joy/poetry-11/morphed/

NASA has selected James Ph. Kotsybar’s poetry for launch into Martian orbit — the first literature to another world. His poetry appears in the mission log of the Hubble Telescope, and has won honors from the Society of Classical Poets, Odes To The Olympians, Ohio’s Ingenuity Center and Balticon. Other publication credits include The Bubble, Askew, LUMMOX Press and Sixfold. Performances include The Los Angeles Performing Arts Center, Llhasa Club, Beyond Baroque Gallery, KCSB 91.9 FM, KDB 93.7 FM, and three cable television channels. He co-owns Chaotic&Exotics (orchid nursery) in northern Santa Barbara County, is an accredited judge for the American Orchid Society and breeder of over a hundred orchid hybrids.


Miroslav Holub — a reflection on accuracy

In science and mathematics, accuracy is key. In this poem, Mirslav Holub (an immunologist) reflects on accuracy. This poem was translated form the Czech by Ewald Osers.

Brief Reflection on Accuracy
    always accurately know where to move and when,
    and likewise
    birds have an accurate built-in time sense
    and orientation.
Humanity, however,
    lacking such instincts resorts to scientific
    research. Its nature is illustrated by the following
A certain soldier
    had to fire a cannon at six o’clock sharp every evening.
    Being a soldier he did so. When his accuracy was
    investigated he explained:
I go by
    the absolutely accurate chronometer in the window
    of the clockmaker down in the city. Every day at seventeen
    forty-five I set my watch by it and
    climb the hill where my cannon stands ready.
    At seventeen fifty-nine precisely I step up to the cannon
    and at eighteen hours sharp I fire.
And it was clear
    that this method of firing was absolutely accurate.
    All that was left was to check that chronometer. So
    the clockmaker down in the city was questioned about
    his instrument’s accuracy.
Oh, said the clockmaker,
    this is one of the most accurate instruments ever. Just imagine,
    for many years now a cannon has been fired at six o’clock sharp.
    And every day I look at this chronometer
    and always it shows exactly six.
Chronometers tick and cannon boom.
Mirslav Holub      



Pick-a-Poem: “Botany”

A fine poem about botany….

The Jet Fuel Review Blog


Welcome, folks, to another Pick-a-Poem post! Each week, we feature a new poem here on the Jet Fuel Review blog. These poems come from a really awesome site called Poetry Daily, which features a new poem every day and has tons of new material for you to read and discover. This week we’re featuring Botany by Sarah Holland-Batt.

According to her bio page, Sarah Holland-Batt is an Australian poet who has won numerous awards. Her first book, Aria, won the Arts ACT Judith Wright Award and was shortlisted for the New South Wales Premier’s Kenneth Slessor Prize. She is also the recipient of the WG Walker Memorial Fulbright Scholarship and an Australia Council Literature Residency. She is currently lecturing in Creative Writing at the Queensland University of Technology.

Botany by Sarah Holland-Batt

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