Guest Poet Celeste A. Cafasso


Such eloquence and proclivity 
The greater poets use
To astound the minds of the educated,
Even gifted Muses  that may or maynot
Glean from their writings some semblance
Of  genius thought, wrought through and through
With allusion and intrusions 
That fail to acknowledge the common man.

But then again, pedantic poets
Have little need to touch the masses
Bringing them to higher level.
They simply verbalize their academic expertise
Leaving the groveler to grovel where he will
In ignorance and bliss of his own arrogance.
Poverty of  ponderings be the sentence passed
Upon the dreary life of those who have no life.

Wings carved of  dreamdust are little better
Than those of Icarus, dear melty blunder that he made.
Thoughts of the gods do not belong 
In minds of those without degree on  paper pounded.
Sealed with the wax of other substances
That declare the fulfillment of satisfactorily completing
Some attainment of  prestige and dignity
The greater poets find their glory in other's eye.

What then becomes of this misbegotten,
"Whoa is me" soul uneducated in the lap of luxury?
Shriveling beneath the heated passions 
Stirred up by one's awe at the allusionist's twisting?
Why , nothing then becomes of her.
She tends her goats and sheep words
As the shepherdess she is,
Or  like Diana, goes a hunting.

Hunting to find some phraseology 
To entangle his mind again,
Unearthly fear trembles her soul.
To gates of Hades she would dare to tread,
To  Heaven's door , race breathlessly
If he would but hold her words so tenderly.
But Goethe  has not written her
She is a simple creation of her God.

No textbooks sit upon her lap.
All symbols from her general knowledge,
Though not quite of the caliber he sought.
She knows the might contained in word,
But choses more oft the lessons of her heart.
Once thoughts flashed out as mighty Zeus's lightning.
She sizzled them still with Poisiedon's realm
As she slipped beneath his waves.

So now, my dear Ill- tempered one,
Before you  expound upon the wonder 
Of some other  fairer  poet,
Taste this the  mirth of Niad
In ink and ice.
Compare the two at leisure.
Which one contains diversity? 
Which one devours your identity?

August, 1998

Celeste A. Cafasso's Questions:

Is the allusion in the title  too insignificantly handled in the poem?

Are there too many  unrelated images  within the poem , and does it, therefore confuse the reader as to what is being said?

Correspond with Celeste A. Cafasso at
with your ideas about this poem.


Eating away the sanity found 
In long worked for , never won,
Secure self - esteem,
A  whory monster,
Reeking of cheap perfume,
Stands there,
Before me laughing.

Trampling down the walls
Meant to seclude the softer me,
The monster, in his nonchalance,
Walks  solidly over my identity
Like worn down cobblestones
Beneath his broad feet,
Destroying  half a life begun.

Taking up residence,
Picking at this one's voice,
And that one's written word,
The rearrangement of my soul
Becomes the monster's task,
In flagrant disregard of 
Any wishes I might possess.

His breath is steamy.
His stare, debilitating
As I become less than 
The clay from whence I came.
Melted  down to merest mud,
With threat of becoming 
Primordial slime.

How can he so reduce me?
Why is it so impossible 
To shoo the beast away?
How can I allow such destruction
Of the elements of goodness.
The particles of wonderment dissolve
Instead of growing crystal beauty.

All just because another climbs
To greater glory in the eyes of those
Whose admiration I did crave.
Less profound, or more complex,
Whatever be the reason there,
Upon the pedestal,  the other gloats
While  I entertain this monster here.

August, 1998

Celeste A. Cafasso's Questions:

Is the spirit of the poem expressive enough of an angry a seething feeling?

Is the understanding clear the the writer feels "good enough"  but find themselves NOT  good enough in others'  eyes?

Correspond with Celeste A. Cafasso at
with your ideas about this poem.

The Albany Poetry Workshop