Pirates Fail to Take Helm

My article on CounterPunch this morning focuses on both the Pirates´ failure (this time around) and promising success (tripling its MPs) while ruminating about coalition politics and what it means for Iceland´s future::

Pirates Fail to Take the Helm: Iceland’s Pirate Party Gains Mileage But not Enough to Steady Ship Alone


Interview on Sputnik Radio

The night before last I was interviewed on Sputnik Radio´s Loud & Clear show regarding the elections held today in Iceland which might catapult the Pirate Party into power.





The visitor felt a pall
Over the old landscape,
Deep, frigid as steel,
Hard without the sadness.

Anchored in his attention
Were the converging lines,
All ending at the same
Distant point, unseen, unpredictable.

His mind rested in a vestibule of intervals
Set between breaths and sighs.
Hope had atrophied-
This was different, some new “existential” moment
To acquire a different heritage
From which he´d crawl towards sunrises to come.

It was not hyperbole to say
The flows of Life would change, yet again,
Converge, and rest a while,
Before he considered another idea of living which would awaken,
Somewhere out among the blending of those lines.



It came down to dragonfly whispers.

Between the winds, elements changed,
Leaves trembled with delight.
Across mountains, clouds feasted on the dreams below.

We all heard the stirrings and responded.

The gods, such as they were,
Whetted their appetites on other issues.

Years later, some historian at her desk would write
Down the names and follow up
With archive searches &
Heavenly exclamations at discoveries
Now unbound.

In the hospitals, madmen would shriek
For breakfast while on rooftops above,
The pigeons would dance for the eyes.

No object shimmered with less than
On its lips.

Tip for Friday or, How to Begin to Change the World (for the Better)

“There’s a time when the operation of the machine becomes so odious, makes you so sick at heart, that you can’t take part! You can’t even passively take part! And you’ve got to put your bodies upon the gears and upon the wheels…upon the levers, upon all the apparatus, and you’ve got to make it stop! And you’ve got to indicate to the people who run it, to the people who own it, that unless you’re free, the machine will be prevented from working at all!”




In the spring, even the flowers lowered their gaze.
Men swore fealty to their sky-gods,
Sat round their tables, plotting with passion
How to win their Eternal names.
A brotherhood of barren beginners
Traveling an ancient, fecund land.
Sorcery was in the air so they set out swiftly,
Crushing hopes for a more
Charitable reconsideration.

The world began in flowers.

Pressing on, three saw the signs:
The flags waved silently;
The birds cried out without warning;
The sun held its own against the
Rising moon.

This would not be easy.

The flowers held my attention.
Around and around we went, village to village,
Following the magic;
We´d taken stock of the witches,
The air vibrated with evil charm.
We slaughtered them all.

At night, we ate our fill,
Speaking of justice and redemption.
I was young; only the scent of the flowers has stayed,
And the betrayal of our humanness
Which haunts me to this day
Lies locked and sealed in a small box
Beneath a heavy cross
Among a few pressed petals, limp, forgotten.


Narco sleep me well…

inside quiet, no
hope for rain, so hot,
its hot again
narco, sleep me well

it´s time again…
veins big now, stretched, tubed,
puncture fine,
works fine,
works so fine, baby…
sleep well,

narco, sleep me well.

pass the pipa, linda,
los generales cant´find us here
green leaves, plantains, and mango pieces
are set
the rice cooks in the other room,
the baby cries-
narco sleep me well.

los enemigos! shhhh!

down along the river
the guerilleros follow blind
red flags dance in the wind,

clouds are coming, the air is wetter,
above, norteamericanos drop papers,
bomb villages,
chose el presidente,
(El Presidente doesn´t care about you, baby)
She drifts folded
in a mosquito net that blows
with the breeze-
narco sleep me well.

in the pot, no! behind the pot!
the needle is warm enough
slow please, papi!
no, no me dejas sola!
alone…the sand on the floor
soft sand, brushes her legs…

alone, she´s not alone,

the sand on the floor is white,

the sand on her legs
rolls front to back, she rolls,

she laughs,
the floor rolls, the light
wakes in purple, the sweat rolls below

her dress, her neck is wet
the lizard stares coldly-
narco sleep me well.

the dress is lifted, high…
it´s time…
high she dreams of birds with sad eyes

(the lizard watches)

parrots with bright colors, fan her to sleep,
hands roughly pinch and examine,

examine? wait!
but the mosquito net waves…
she waves back in hazy sun memories
of a family gone,
alone now,

she´s not alone,

the rains begin, they fall,
the curtains close

the pot is boiling,
narco, please,

please, sleep me well tonight.


They rush, disturbed, alarmed,
they panic in fits,
they shake,
slobbering the dancing spittle
of anxious fears and trembling flights
of ferocious fancy we all know will not occur.

They hear our objections,
they wait, regather to whisper,
use the conspiratorial finger, the pointed
line about the evil that will follow
if we do not step in line, this time,
this man is different,
for what will follow is our End, they say.

Blue-lipped fears, goose-stepping black boots
on the faces of our children, they cry!
you cannot hope for better: this is what we have.
Between the madness curled at the edges of their eyes
and the passionated fears they cling to
I see no difference:

the phosphorous burns the same in Aleppo as in Gaza,
the squeezed salaries holding girls to chairs
where urine drips to meet quotas
on cold, hard floors, the same,
the smoky waters, flaming at times near our homes,
the same,
the places of our mothers torn, stripped and polluted,
our fathers ways destroyed, all
the same,
the millions reaching out, running, screaming for help
where our bombs fall, guided by hands ordered by
either of the ones we pick,
the same,
the hidden faces of the girls taken, sold, and selling-
the same,
the dealers in death, makers of black billions on
every continent,
the same,
the radiated waters, the dying fish
the warmer seas, the melting caps
the greater storms, the weaker systems
the same
all the same,
no matter who wins.

Both windows open
both hearts closed.

The waters of the rivers flow
the same
until you flood new fields to grow