blackmail press 37
Luke Young
United States of America

Mere & Child - Penny Howard
Luke Young comes from Turtle Island (North America) and is of Native American extraction. He has spent most of his life in Asia traveling and working.
For days and days the termites hatched

               From the wood workings of this old house
Their hum rattled against the tiled floor
                                       Reaching for the open air
                                       Following the outside light I guided them to
By shrouding the house in darkness
As they inched over the floor
Frogs appeared from the damp underbrush
       Licking up the weak
                       While the bats and swallows dived low over the house
                       In and out of the rippling insect cloud
       For a moment my house became a feast
       For a moment the frogs we hear but seldom see
               Station themselves by the door
               Knowing we appreciate them
               Knowing they are welcome to our house’s plentiful feed

The Boeung Kok 13

  Voices sang to sands
           Without placards or protests
  A simple lament of land lost
   Livelihoods crushed
   And homes churned into rubble
  Until violence arrived on motorcycles
   Machine guns, radios and batons
     Caving in faces
      Breaking lips of song –
  Dragged to a judicial hearing
Without delay
  The verdict was set
Before they arrived
  A life of cracked concrete
And dark blue uniforms
Their new home:
  Prey Sar Prison


Small hands of different sizes
The little ones in the early stages of their time
Press against mine
On the eternal stone wall
Silhouettes and shadows of the legends of before
An imprint of all that lives
Sharing existence
Created from existence
A planet of life
The littlest one chasing a tree up its first leaves
Where the wind crosses earth
In each sacred direction therein

Edudi Uliyesdi (Grandfather Cactus)

Tranquil rising visions of the night
Met the full moon shrouded in thunderheads
And soft flashes of untouchable light
I closed my eyes in greeting
Opening them again
To look upon hot coals and licking firewood flames
Closed again
The vision appeared:
A city in an eternity of black
Twisting roads fading from a distance of nothing
To skyscraper city center
It was all dirty
As I took it in
The city changed
Into a gnarled angry and bruised octopus
Side stepping between the earth where it was a city
And the heavens that it was struggling to get to
It was attempting to climb from this plain
To the next
High above
While stuck in between it began to show marks of a beating
   By a large cymbal-monkey with blood trailing out its nipples
And no cymbals in its hands
Grinning wickedly
Shaking ridged arms back and forth –
A question came from the void
“What will you be?”
I felt the implications of struggle and torment
“One of selfishness, distraction and destruction
Or will you choose peace and alignment?” –
There was no source to the words
But the black consuming eye of the octopi
Never blinked
As I blinked myself back
To the far off Thunder Beings
And a cool gentle breeze in the air
With eyes open
I knew my choice had been correct.