The Artist From Beijing
          by Bic Uwel, “Erased”

He is not quite invisible, the artist from Beijing,
who’s front and center in his art, but partially unseen.
He’s commenting on social and political designs,
wherein the human being dwells in critical aligns.
He protests nearly silently in his environment,
because he must be wary of his Middle Government.
He stands in front of messages, as if he’s a collage,
that’s hiding in the city in his subtle camouflage.
He doesn’t play Liubo, linked in or not, when on the Go,
but he’ll play Hide and Seek if you can find his solo show.

Bic Uwel, “Erased” is a poet who doesn’t exist. He was killed off by a literary world that had no need for the poetry he wrote; and though placed in the trash bin and deleted long ago, poems of his surface every now and then.

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          A Snapshot of Platon
          by Cawb Edius Reel

He was brought up in the Greek Islands many years ago,
the Greco-Anglophone photographer, known as Platon.
His father Greek, an architect, drew clear, bold lines, he said,
he grew up with a black and white aesthetic in his head;
his mother English was herself an art historian;
thus in his art he seeks the simple, lucid core undone,
like as the power he’s seen in the Parthenon’s grand grace,
and which he seeks within his photos of the human face;
like Christ and other figures from the churches of his youth,
iconic pictures of the famous and unknown, through truth.

Cawb Edius Reel is a film and photography buff. One of his favourite pictures is “Tank Man,” a lone Chinese protester standing in front of the Chinese Communist Army Tanks in Tiananmen Square in 1989, whose identity and fate remain unknown.

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          Paris Rat Epidemic
          Claude I. S. Weber
          “…c’était un rat vivant.”
          —Charles Baudelaire, “Le joujou du pauvre”
          “There is no horse text.”
          —Jacques Derrière

Five million rats are scurrying about Parisian haunts;
one place they like, near Eiffel Tower, is the Champs de Mars.
But this is nothing new, that little critters like the place,
they don’t mind air pollution and they do enjoy the space.
They fit in well with pompous pigeons and frank arrogance,
protesters rioting and damaging parked bikes and cars.
They also fit in with drunk tourists at outdoor cafes,
or terrorists involved with their own vile auto-da-fés.
They fit in with the chefs and haute-couture aristocats,
along with other urban vermin. Yes, they are a match.

Claude I. S. Weber is a poet fond of French literature. His favourite novel is “Le Comte de Monte-Cristo.” Edmond Dantès was used to rats in the Château d’If. In the 21st century, the black rat infestation of Montecristo was so bad, two-dozen tons of poison pellets were helicopter dropped by upon it; and now it is reportedly “the largest rat-free island in the Mediterranean.”

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          Dad
          by Bruce Dale Wise

I still can hear the echo of his voice—2004—
my dad, when he said, as he opened up the bedroom door,
“I like your songs.” In truth, they were so bad. We did not know.
I could not sing, nor play the guitar—Claude Nougaro, no.
I’ve no song for the city of my youth. I have no statuette.
The city of my youth was pink, but only at sunset…
from the pollution of the paper mills, which sent dad’s kids
to college, castles in the air, and cars upon the skids.
The long view that I had back then, I will not see again.
And, dad, no one will hear those songs, but you once did—back then.

Bruce Dale Wise is an American poet and essayist who writes under various anagrammatic heteronyms—usually. His favourite French song of the Postmodernist period is Charles Trenet’s chanson classic and jazz standard “La Mer” and in the New Millennial period Carla Bruni’s “L’amoureuse”.