poems
prayers
promises
thoughts
ruminations
feelings
yearnings
winsome reveries
whispers
and words on white paper

 

Poems from the 1970's

Poetry from the 1980's

Poetry from the 1990's

Poetry from the 2000's

 

The Sixties Poetry

Heartbeats on the Oscilliscope of Life: A Diary

Original ElectricPoetry Site and Webring Stack

 

Collected here are the various "Introductions" I have written for my collected works over the years. Beginning in 1972, I wrote eight separate "Introductions" as I expanded the Volumes of poetry I wrote. It has taken me eight years to create the "new" Introductions webpage. The "original page" from the Homestead site, has been online since the early aughts, but I only had three of the eight introductions on the page. Now, for the first time I have collected all the introductions, and have penned a brand new introduction for 2007. I am creating this page finally in May of 2007. At first my "Introductions" to the actual "Poetry Volumes" were semi annual. As I created new "editions" of my physical "Poetry Volume(s)" throughout the years, I added Introductions. I have now transcribed all the Introductions that had not yet made it to the internet. If anything, this serves as "one man's reasons" for writing poetry about life throughout life, or "why I write Poetry"

"Poetry, A Loosely Constructed Essay" was the first introduction, and was created when I collected all my poetry and transcribed them chronologically in 1972. Since I wrote 134 poems in 1971, I wanted to be able to display all my poems in one place. A lot of early "art" and "literature" I created as a child was forgotten, but I didn't want to forget my poetry. I knew I had a gift, and this was a gift I would wrap up and present to people. Although I handwrote the poems, I did type everything through December 1972 for inclusion in the first "Volume" of my "Collected Works". The volume was typed, but the Introduction was handwritten. I still printed neatly in the 70s and 80s. amd I would always create a poem by hand.
Two years later, I bound the college poems into another larger "Volume" and wrote the 1974 Introduction "Poetry:The Lifeblood of My Humanity" which is mainly a dissertation on the suicide poems I had written. Most of the poetry I had written in the latter year of high school and in college are negatively themed, owing to the turmoil facing my family and me at the time. I used to "loan" my original Poetry Volume to friends, usually girls and women, and most definitely those gals I wished to woo. Even after college ended for me, I continued to write poetry.

In 1977, approaching the age of 25, and fired from my first job in retail management, I spent two months unemployed and wrote for most of the time, and I collected my poetry into two Volumes, and wrote another essay: "Poetry: A Reality to Offset the Craziness". My poetic muse has disappeared sometimes for a year or two at a time, but after the explosion of creativity in 1971, when I "found my voice" in poetry through lots of experimentation, I averaged about 20 poems a year.

The Next Introduction was penned following my most poetic year since high school. In 1978 I wrote 67 poems, most of them unrequited love poems for a girl named Cathy. "Poetry: Why I Cry: (An Introduction to the poetry to be written in 1979 and an epilogue to the poetry of 1978)" is a chronicle of the "Cathy Poems" and explicates some of the more intricate poems.

In 1980 I changed my binders from standard college issue to those extra large three ring binders used for archiving material. I wrote yet another Introduction, and also wrote the "yearly" introductions which grace the webpages for each year of Poety through 1980.

I recently transcribed "Poetry: Looking for the Fulfillment Exit on the Freeway to Nowhere" basically a drug induced treatise from 1980.

1982 found yet another Introduction, "On Poetry: An Essay" which leads with some selections of my poetry, including the "title poem" for the essay, "On Poetry". I proclaimed that I would continue to chronicle my life in poetry. Although I didn't write an Introduction for the next Volume, I started 1984 with a third volume of poetry, and then didn't write any poetry for most of the rest of the 80s.

Michael F. Nyiri, poet, philosopher, fool


"Poetry, A Loosely Constructed Essay"

Written by MIchael F. Nyiri at 19 years of age in 1972.

When two people meet, they notice only that outer covering called the "skin" and only a "pinch" of personality. They fail to realize that the one standing across from them is not a walking doll, but a human being with fears, hopes, achievements, and failures, a paradox on two legs, a map of life. We so seldom think of others, we say we do, but we feel sorry for ourselves even more so. The casual passerby who asks for the time is as much a person as we are, yet we fail to realize this. He has porobably fallen in and out of love, witnessed tragedy, and pulled through an accident barely alive also.

The poet accomplishes two things in this world of people. He writes about himself and others. Writing about life is difficult, but it forces others to realize people are "here', they are living, they are alive.

No poet is perfect. They all try very hard, though. A poem is a thought or an emotion, expressed through the eyes of the poet. Some poems are written in a month, a year, others in a moment. Poems diagram a small bit of life. Each poem is a heartbeat on an oscilliscope. Each poem is a small part of a great whole.

The poet can only be biased. He can't help it. Even though he may try, he only "knows" himself. He only tries to write about others, and the poem only proclaims what he thought at the time he wrote it.

This collection spans a few years. When the poet is extremely young, he hardly knows his own feelings. The poems are merely versed stories, most with no content other than entertainment.

The poems grow in insight with time. Some are bad only because they are not understood. No poem is really good if it tries to imitate a moment in life. The poet is extremely fortunate if people understand what he feebly attempts to say.

A poem may or may not rhyme, it may or may not have punctuation, or strict meters. What it does have is one feeling or thought, one bit of mind of the poet.

A poem is only a group of words. They may be constructed in any number of ways, but they only try ot convey, to communicate with others one facet of life.

Whether they succeed is up to life itself.

MFN 1972

"Poetry: The Lifeblood of My Humanity."

Written by Michael F. Nyiri in 1974

As I look back upon this volume and ponder, I find my best period by far was the year 1971. Apt that it should be the last phase of a particular part of my life and the beginning of a somber, more personal outlook. Some people can muse all they want about how three years can change someone, and I believe wholeheartedly that my whole concept of reality now is somewhat more complicated than it was in 1971, although outwardly and inwardly I find this change more stupefying than it need be. Three years in one's life are hardly a large slice of the pie.

I choose 1971 as the good year because it is then that the poet discovers truth in poetry and forsakes the earlier, more absurd balladic form found in much of the poetry of 68-70. The poem which still evokes for me a kind of satisfaction of the art is "Like Ships That Pass Etc." and I still feel sad everytime I think about that "essence". The poems in 71 are the start of directions which take me, sometimes too rapidly, to the present. In order to keep to a time scale so that study is more fulfilling in discovering the poet, let me look at each "series" or "groupings" of poetical thought in 1971, and then follow them to their inevitable end.

Before I undertake that task, however, let me assert my expressions of my own poetical behavior. In 1972, when I wrote "Poetry - A Loosely Constructed Essay", I had just stepped into this crazy world rom the sanctity of "highschool". Highschool images, which will forever haunt my poetry (cf. "Class of 71", "Reunion", "Portrait of the Majorette", "To My Sister", "Ode to Friendship", "Morning After", etc.can be directly juxtaposed to the real world images which so clearly bothered me when I wrote "Who ever said that people are indifferent. : The aren't : To themselves." ("Meditations XIII", 1972) and poems like "Title Tune" and "Untitled IV".

Poems came quickly in 1971, but as my life slowly changed, my poetry came out more slowly. I wrote "A month, which promised so much last month : Is past " ("Reflections on a Month Gone By" 1972)

I became disillusioned with the entire tautology of being. My religious poems increased in number as 1973 dawned. ("Thanksgiving Prayer") I fell in and out of love (again) and rushed headlong into the state of mind I have now with the help from many outside and inside forces. Poems came seldom and there have been long periods of time when I have not been able to write at all. (as when my father recently died) I find now that I am less poetical, and can take life a little more granted, but then again, I find myself turning toward pen and paper oftener and oftener to ask the same fundamental questions.

As I look over those many poems of 1971, I can find many "roots" to future directions, which in 1974, seem to channel into one mainstream thought, to what purpose is my life, if after so many revelations in my oh so short existence, I find I still "so flatly exist" to so many people.

"Premonition" in 1971 stated a basic fact which I still believe - which in fact has spawned the basis of each "love" poem - that is if we think about our emotions - we cloud the very essence of the emotions themselves. "Thoughts in the Cubicle", like "Martyred" and "Escape", and then in the sequence, "Failing to Bridge the Gap" have in them my essences of social protest, which began an early part of my thought processes, but which sort of dead ended, although certain poems do pop up occasionally including "91770 Express", "Impetus" and "My Hometown".

My themes certainly are numerous, but in order to clarify how my mind runs through 1971 to the present, let me present one thematic concept and it's changes.

In 1971, with "Ballad of a Razor Blade" and in 1972, with "Couldn't Help It" I elaborated my suicide complex poetry, which wracked my thoughts almost completely after two very unsuccessful attempts at love. The suicide poems could be traced to portraits such as "Smith" and "Lover's Little Stranger" in 1971, because "Lover's Little Stranger" does have a bit of the poet in him - and of course the last line "Not much more can Stranger take" closely parallels some of my stronger feelings at the time.

The dejected feeling expressed in "Depression II", which is only a thematic reproduction of my first poem, "A Chlorophyll Filled Death", was written in one of my truly depressionistic periods of 1971, but that took root in the later, more sophisticated poetry of "Couldn't Help It" where the suicidal thought reaches culmination in accident. The account inspired by "Couldn't Help It" later appeared again in the more ambitious "Thanatopsis" (4-73) "a year later speeding home on the freeway : All of a sudden "where is home?" ("Thanatopsis")

Both "Thanatopsis" and "Ballad of a Razor Blade" are not the poet's suicide thoughts in essence, though "Razor Blade" is the projection of a girl I knew in high school, and a vision of what I believed her death might be. (The same girl is the subject of "Wings of Dust", appears in "Rosencrantz is Battling the Dusk" and is also the subject of "Last Time I'll Think About Her, I'll Bet")

"Thanatopsis" is the lamentation for a girl I happened to meet last year through my brother. The poem helps me to release some of my thoughts and actually only gives the subject some 17 lines.

In "The Morning After" (12-72) I use the imagery of "waiting for Act III" which I still doubt is a suicidal expression , although it could be. Sometimes the poetry comes out of me and I don't know exactly what it means.

With the poem "Nothing", early in 1973, I changed my views somewhat, although "Thanatopsis" was written sometime afterward. With "Nothing" my "poetic ramblings" reflected for the first time my mother's illness, which is interesting to note, because since my family's misfortune, the suicide poetic thought in me diminishes. It is treated lightly in an untitled poem written 2-12-73 which begins, "I laughed I floored the pedal..." This means I had found myself somewhat. ("Thanatopsis" was written for the benefit of it's subject, but unfortunately she never read it.)

My middle poetry of 1973 concerns two "love" affairs, one in deed and one in thought, they were never really unrequited enough to cause an inspired suicide rambling which by this time had been pegged by the poet as a mere theme and nothing to worry about.

The suicide feeling disappeared somewhat when I wrote, in "No Meter" (1-10-74) "Don't know about tomorrow, but I'll fight it today." ("No Meter")

It is apparent that the poetic mind is changing when "home" as a suicidal image, turns into the maternal home in "Coming Home", one of the few poems written directly before my father's death.

In the second movement of the poem, my questions are asked directly -and then, as a conclusion I proclaim "I shall know how it is to feel : My existense someday" ("Coming Home")

Poetically, I am still there, and after my father's death, he is not mentioned. In fact, to come back to my recent poetry, this past September, I am analyzing present relationships again - but what is interesting is that now I'm having more trouble expressing myself, and also, I want to say more.

Of course I deal with other poetical themes which were instituted in 1971 then developed. For instance, my spiritual poetry very much developed in 1973-74 with "Four Walls" and "God Proved Himself to Me", "Poem for the New Year" and "The Religions"

Now, however, I find my themes clashing and mixing with each other and poems prove difficult to appear. I even deal with our inability to communicate in the "What are Words But A Hindrance to Communication" essays.

So now my directions are channeling into one theme. "Where am I in the scheme of things, and how do I reslove my position". From there, I know I will find new, however few, ideas for directions in 1975.

I can see myself lecturing, as usual, and holding poetic discussions, and letting my closest friends read my volume (or as I call it , my life thoughts on paper) but I still cannot see publishing as a desired end. I only hope those who read can understand me more - and can realize that these cardboard people they come in contact with everyday are little microcosms of the universe and have probably been through as much or more tha we have too.

I really don't know whether I've written this second preface for the people who will read this volume in 1975, or whether I've written it in fact for myself, because I can see future thoughts brewing, and I do want ever so much to write about everything I experience. How else can this volume express my complete being.

I've been tortured this past year with the facts I've been confronted with in the Book of Revelation in the Bible, and I can see myself comiling a "Paradise Lost" of my own, but then I remember in 1970 when I wanted to write my own Biblical interpretation.

I never know what to expect in life, and I'm ever so confused about whether or not I'm ever going to find a release for my "passionate" feelings, rather than the pen and paper - but as Shelley believed, we are all striving for perfection, and the only alternative is death and what's beyond it.

I'm looking forward to my own poetical revelations in the coming years.

Michael F. Nyiri October, 1974


"Poetry: A Reality to Offset the Craziness"

Written by Michael F. Nyiri in 1977

As I sit down and begin to annotate this lexicon by adding yet another introduction. (We have to keep these things up to date, you know.) I'm tempted to use a large amount of old cliiches, then close the book and return it to the cupboard, where it can gather dust until next year, when I write three more poems to include.

Sadly, though, I can think of only one apt cliche, and that is "Here we go again" because cynically, as I notice I've written merely seven poems so far this year, I can only laugh and hope I can "really" sit down and "produce" this year. God knows. I've got many themes to elaborate, and if I don't elaborateI simply won't ever get out of the same thematic rut.
Well, then. "Here we go again".

The very last poem I wrote in 1976 (out of a whopping twenty for the year) was titled, ironically enough, "The Poetry Returns". If I continue this trend, I will seem to suffer only a couple a year, and I know they will be inferior. The only way I will return to my loquatiousness in the art is to practice, write down every thought in my head, as I used to. God knows I'll really try.
If I don't try, then I'll lapse into a cynicism about my poetry, and if this happens, I can't guess what will happen to my own perception. As it stands, my poetry is about the only thing I'm not yet cynical about , and if I can, I will attempt to recreate why I'm cynical in the poetry of the coming year.
During the past six months, I've been incredibly lonely. Because of no car, and because of no job, I see few people, and they have not given me any cause to write poetry. Oh for a poetic personality like Mike Ford to venture into my life. If not, then I'm sure I will get angry in poetry, and I'd much rather be sensitive.

I've discovered two very disconcerting truths. (if they are truths) the past few months. One is that I think true friendship disappears as we get older. I hope this is not the case, and I certainly hope it is not just me. Because if it is, then I do not have a reason for existing. Maybe my trouble stems, as it has in the past, from the fact that I give of myself too much, and nobody else does. However, I think the main trouble is that I'm not "mobile". When we are mobile, we can see who we want at whatever time we want and discuss whatever we want. I find I'm restricted to waiting for whoever happens to drop by here, and then that person may not be the right person to discuss what I want to. What I really need is a girlfriend. Maybe I shouldn't have broken up with Ruth, after all, I haven't found anybody since who was as understanding of me (male or female) and all the girls I've met haven't lived up to Ruth in my eyes. I really think I punctured that relationship "royal" as we used to say in grade school so long ago.

My second observation, I'm sure, stems from the fact that I've been using a lot of drugs and "hanging around" (at least before the past six months) drug users. My vocabulary has diminished, I've forgotten how to correctly express myself, and I find conversations stilted, uninteresting, and unnecessary. And if conversation becomes unnecessary, then of course so does communication, and if we can't communicate, then our world falls apart and we sybolically die. I think this is happening to me and I fear it badly.

I'm very glad I haven't had that much time (or money) for drugs these past few months (not that I'd ever again put them down as in high school) because now I think I may become more productive because my mind has been given a chance to work. There is, I truly believe, and I by no means profess myself an expert, only one drug worth taking, and that is LSD. This is a "positive" drug, in that certain "personality planes" can be attained, thereby forcing truth into the open. The drug is two-way, however. One person alone cannot enjoy the experience very much.

All other drugs are negative, and tend to confuse people, especially if they are not entirely open with each other or tend to neglect the "reality" of the experience.(or, to reverse that, if they point out the reality to someone who doesn't want it.)

I'm convinced that drugs do ot enhance truth or conversations, and are good only in crowds (where two people can find the same reference point and laugh at everybody else.) or alone, when maximum attention can be focused on one thing.

To present an example of a two person negativistic drug related experience (at least for me) (everybody is different) I find if I want to concentrate on one thing ("Here, buddy, you'll love this song") and the other person doesn't I'll feel dejected and terrible, and sense (by the stoned BORED expression on the other's face) that he doesn't like the record. If there is conflict of any kind, I feel intensely negativistic and disgusting, and in order to fight my feeling, I become, as one good friend has correctly pointed out, an "a**hole".

I know this is beginning to sound like a drug treatise, but then drugs have been very familiar to me, and I'm still trying to figure myself out in their context. Remember, many people in the sixties used drugs in order to "find" themselves. Well, they "found" themselves so much I think, that they tended to "lose" everybody else, and I'm da*n sorry that this happens because, then again, as I've pointed out, we lose our communication.
Well, as I write, I find I'm trying to find answers as usual, and hopefully I can successfully ask my questions this year in a poetic sense.
Maybe at some time in the future, someone will read a poem from 1978, and say, as people used to say in 1972, "Yes, I felt that way once". As a poet, that is all I can hope for: that spark of recognition, which makes me realize that even though each living individual is a world of colliding and conflicting thoughts, a galaxy of hopes, dreams, and imagination, a universe of sorrows and interrupted reflections, he or she is related to everyone else by some reference point. We are all part of a universal mind, whether called God or the cosmos. We all touch each other's lives for good or for bad, and by relating mine through the art of poetry, I can only hoe to touch that spark of recognition in another reader.

To repeat myself from my first essay, "whether I succeed is up to life itself."

Thank you for listening.
Michael F. Nyiri December 12th, 1977
"I'll never really know, but I must try
To separate the truth
From all the lies"

"Poetry: Why I Cry: (An Introduction to the poetry to be written in 1979 and an epilogue to the poetry of 1978)"

"Poetry: Why I Cry"
An Introduction to the poetry to be written in 1979 and an epilogue to the poetry of 1978.

Time has performed one of her cleverest little tricks again: slapping December upon us just as we're trying to figure out what happened last January. It seems that just yesterday I was sitting here composing "Poem for the New Year 1978" and now I have collected a full year's worth of experiences and written, finally, a full year's worth of poems chronicling those experiences. Tomorrow is 1980 - and before we know it next week will be 2000 etc.

I have titled this rhetoric "why I cry" because all of this past year's poems have been very negative love poems, and I see this trend continuing until the subject (inspiration) of those poems finally accepts me as a lover, if that ever becomes reality, and the love poems can take on a more celebrative, optimistic viewpoint.

If not, negativism will control my life. At least until the next scene.

"Poem for the New Year - 1978" discusses the poet's downfall in terms of comedy, proclaiming that Act III will have a happy ending. Then it ends with "It has to." showing that the poet still is not sure. (Of course, who can be sure in life?) He remains cynical.

Cynicism dominates the first few poems, until the transformation with the "Cathy poems", a large body of work (all major '78 poems, about 60) which rehashes the same old theme "I love you. Why don't you love me?" and adds a few new subthemes. By the end of the span, one can get a pretty clear picture of how the poet attempts to win love with subtlety, with praise, with contempt, with force. All to no avail. Since he cannot abandon the theme (only 6 poems for the year 1978 were not written for Cathy.) he experiments with style, rhyme and rhythm patterns, and even commands some lyricism. Sadly, though, the words keep coming out the same. This coming year, the poet should strive for equal or better production, but should pay more attention to word usage, especially with rhyme. I'd hate to read over all the love poetry since 1971 counting the number of times "love" is rhymed with "above". "If only I had a nickel....etc."

There are some pleasant surprises in the poetry of 78, especially if one recounts the drought of 73 through 77 and some of the totally bad poetry written during that time.

The "first letter reading down" (anacrostic) school of poetry picks up about four new poems and in "The Language to Win You (has never been written)" the first letters of each line actually spell out a message instead of a mere name.

There is some experimentation with drug induced poetry (cf "Children" "The Definitive Balloon Poem") and poems disclaiming drugs ("Water on the Brain", "The Last Beer") One poem which could truly be considered epic is the long (8 pages) "Lyrical Nostalgia and Foolish Nonsense" a rather "ambitious undertaking in poetical thought" where the poet gives an autobiography in free verse, delegating a few lines to each year. If ever I wanted to say, here's a poem that is me, this be it. I already have plans of writing another bio-poem about Cathy for her next birthday. The style echoes some of the more ambitious poems of 1974 ("n...a strong and deep feeling of...." comes to mind.) where each verse is simply a jumble of words with little puncutation or syntax.

In "The Great Battle Twixt Mind and Heart Rages On" the poet elaborates in great depth how emotion battles intellect for possession of the girl. Emotion epitomizes hope, which wants the girl because it knows that true love exists in a romantic sense but has to be given time to grow. Intellect epitomizes cynicism which urges the poet to stop the mindless exercise (as the girl herself does) I'm very proud of this poem, in that it correctly states my mind's raging battle, and the conflicting thoughts which occur when one person tries to steal another from their lifestyle anbd plant her in his own. The poem also shows clearly how cynicism and romantic love can exist side by side and how an individual who loves someone and is trying to win her can easily get mad and say the wrong thing to her. This poem might very well answer all of the "questioning" poems in these volumes. Heart and mind are separate, warring partners. I can see that this is going to be a major theme to elaborate in 79.

Some poems work on double and triple levels and some have subtle double entendres included.

The best two songs both describe looking into a lover's eyes - and the "universal kiss". They are "Solitaire/Darting Eyes" and "A Personal Note". Both poems try to capture the moment of love - where romantic (spiritual) and sexual (carnal) harmony is attained. Women experience orgasm n this way (the best way, there are others) And men can experience the closest thing to a woman's orgasm in this way mentally and emotionally.

This feeling occurs very seldom - has never occured in my relationships, and I've never known any woman who confessed she had experienced it. (Poets are the only ones, I fear, that even know it does exist, and nobody reads poems but poets and women (and critics, but they don't count.)

Sadly, if the "Cathy Poems" prove futile in winning their subject, the poet will never be able to fully expand his knowledge of the subject, but C'est la vie.

Byron and Shelley knew and practiced faking the feeling for many women, and became known as masterful lovers. (These poets were a lusty lot.) However, I hold to the belief that I don't want to fake the feeling, and it only happens for two people who truly love each other.

True love (romantic love) is the total subject of each Cathy poem and all my poetry in general. It is good for the poet to have unrequited affairs, because "lost love" poems are very sensitive. However, I never seem to have a true love experience although I, as a sensitive person and a poet, know that true love exists.

In 1979, I will look forward to fully exploring the love feeling, maybe asking around about true love feelings in others, or attempting to make observations. I would love to write a positive love poem and not have to call it "Solitaire".

I find I have a distinct duality which shifts drastically, and I have no control over it. My emotions rule me and my intellect rules me, and they fight all the time. My intellect doesn't trust anybody and my emotions trust everything. My physical person can't take this most all the time. I'm either cynical, and assholish, or I'm crying.

And the crying isn't just a jag, as I would be saying if I were "macho". I very seldom cry when drunk. I cry most easily when I look into Cathy's liquid eyes and see the love they have in them, and then see the door slide shut and bar me out as at the same time my love comes out of my eyes so hard and so fast it formulates in tears.

I've called this essay "why I cry'. I do physically cry and my poems cry. Crying embodies sadness. When mothers cry at weddings it is because they have lost their daughters.

When father died, I cried for days, and my sister didn't cry at all. I remember when a girl in high school's father died, she didn't seem upset at all and I accused her of having no heart. On the day of my father's funeral, I had come to grips with the situation. My sister began to sob openly before the preacher finished with the eulogy. We all cry in different ways, and I cry for Cathy as much as for myself because we need each other.

For the first part of 1979, at least, I know my poetry will consist of sad songs about love.

And I know now I will only write "the last love song" when I'm satisfied with love and not until.

I hope I'm as productive at least this next year as I was last year., and I hope I can be less cynical, and maybe happier.

Let us resolve the situation
Close the book and end the show
Le't touch each other with our eyes
And find out all that we don't know

Thanks for listening (again)
Michael F. Nyiri
2:30 to 4:00 pm
11-25-78
Torrance, California

 

"Introduction to the Two Volume 1980 Edition"

Written by Michael F. Nyiri in 1980

This tome comprises thirteen years in the life of the poet. Beginning when he is merely thirteen, the poet attempts the difficult struggle to emote on paper, a task which sometimes proves easy, sometimes proves futile, but nevertheless remains interesting.

The poet analyzes his productivity (or lack thereof) in the semi-annual introductions, so this simple introduction to the complete work shall not attempt to do this.

Suffice it to say that the poet charts life, however inconsistent, with truth, and, as poets in the past have attempted, to infuse this truth with beauty, and create art.

Sometimes he succeeds, and only so if the reader can recognize him or herself, for the poet truly believes that all thought processes are universal, and poets are merely the gifted few who mouth that universality.

If the reader can understand, by charting the poet's feelings throughout life, his link, and ultimately, mankind's link with the universal mind, then the poet's purpose has been fulfilled.

Each year is sectioned showing the poet's age and some of the year's accomplishments.

No poem is ever truly complete....because lfe rarely, if ever, can be called complete.

Michael F. Nyiri 3-13-1980 Torrance, CA.


"Poetry: Looking for the Fullfillness Exit on the Freeway to Nowhere..."

Written by Michael F. Nyiri Feb. 23, 1980

The f*cking new decade began over a month ago and I haven't even written "Poem for the New Year 1980." Will I? It's taken this long to write the introduction and I smoked a joint before beginning (a first). What haven't I said in this volume? What ground haven't I covered? Well. I play this charade every year, and (Damn, 1978 I did write over 60 poems) every year I think I'll actually be productive. This year, I'll by cynical. Maybe productivity will be borne of that.

This year I turn 27. There have been 1 steady relationship with sex, 2 without sex, 1 one sided relationship with partial sex, and one relationship with nothing but sex. What next? Love, my dear Watson, Love????

I look continually. I watch faces. And now more than ever. But I'm still picky. It's been months since Diane. I'm still, like Buddy Holly's immortal persona, thinking it's getting closer, everyday. But there's nothing for me to do except wait and let people know. Maybe someday the right girl will find me. I've found many who didn't think I was right.

So I keep looking, and keep asking the same questions about life. The following essay was written before this that you're reading now. I wrote it after thinking about it while stoned (I've never written while stoned before)

I feel like I'm at a standstill, but as usual, I'm looking on the bright side. I'm working inside a store now and I'm willing to meet new people. I'm willing to practice my doctrines. In reading my poetry, find a richness of self. Find my soul. It has touched each poem. If more people acknowledge the impact, if any, of my poetry, I shall be compelled to produce. I need this to counteract any repressed cynicism real or imagined I might harbor.

A poem is a truth. It is wholly a part of the poet's emotiion.It exists.

You know when you're on really good pot and you're listening to music and you're really stoned and you might or might not have listened to the music before; it doesn't matter, but all of a sudden you find you're REALLY listening to the words, and they make so much sense, like even a phrase like "she left him" or "he left her" takes on all the implications it's supposed to, and you really understand.

My poetry is like that. It should be read like that. It is simple, yet complicated. Easy yet not so easy. At it's best, it says as mych as it possibly can in as few words, exactly what poetry should do.

At it's worst it doesn't really exist.

I think that poetry exists in me only when it should. That the words travel out of my pen without even touching my brain if the poetry's there.

Other times it is not there and no matter how hard I try I just can't wake it up.

I can be my poetry's best friend or it's most hated critic, for I've read it so often lately after not finding inspiration following the "Cathy poems". Funny? I haven't reread the "Cathy poems" too often. Why?

How will we answer any of these questions? I've asked the questions in countless poems. The themes are few but powerful. Not the questions should be answered. I shall inwardly die if I can't feel the answers.

I know the answers.
But no one else seems to.
If only I could find someone
to cast my love's beams to.

We all live so flatly
Simply feigning our joy
And I still fell love
for each girl and each boy

But my love's not returned
Only abided or spurned
Seems no love have I earned
and the answers are burned.

I thought of a term yesterday. "The Freeway to Nowhere". I feel as if we're all on the Freeway to Nowhere. The world is a mess. The leaders play stupid games and human lives still remain at stake. It's been like that a long time. It still is. Dope is overused by too many people in too many ways, and the repurcussions are resounding only too clearly. And I speak from experience. I overuse - tell myself I should quit and don't. We all do the same thing. It's terrible.

But I still laugh. We all want to. I cry too much. (inwardly) (Guess that's why I laugh so much on the outside) Aren't we all like that in one way or another?

Just like the song you hear on dope contains important messages you've never heard, so does each person in the world. We are much more than we seem, to each other. And we should reach out and touch more often. But we don't. When inspired by love, I write poetry. Sad that love hasn't happened because then I will develop new themes.

This essay will divide these feelings into major themes. 1. Love given. 2. Love returned. (partially) and maybe love returned fully.

Only by being immersed in care for our fellow humans can we tilt the world back on it's course.

I hope my poetry can in one small way help to accomplish this.

Each poem (to repeat) is a moment frozen in time- a thoughtfoto. By fully reading each poem chronologically, one can grasp a total picture of the poet's life, beliefs, and remembrances. If he can touch off a spark of remembrance or care in another, his purpose is fulfilled.

Someday, perhaps, each poem shall be written a masterpiece. Perhaps, I'll become an artist, as I have always dreames. Dear "Mommy" (oh, that you'd lived) always called me special. Always said I had talent. My friends see my drawings, read my poems, and (after they criticize) they applaud. I call myself conceited but rarely applaud. I look back at highschool (was it me who said "highschool images will always haunt my poetry) and think of how important I wanted it to become. I thought I was good at everything, but then I realized I'm only mediocre. I don't practice. I drink beer. I smoke dope. I don't care. Is this an apology? Do I write these damn things as apologies? Excuses? Well- I write this for myself too, because it is my poetry.

The poetry will return, triumphantly, when next inspiration hits. I'm over Cathy just as much now as I'm over Kathy, Emma, Kathy M., Gabrielly, Melissa, Ruth (ha! ha!) , Karen, Terry, or Darlene. I'm even in a position to understand my relationship to Diane. And whatever happens I hope the poems come. Each girl is special and the words are always fresh because every person is unique.

I love life and I celebrate it. "And I shall know how it is to feel my existence someday."

To you dear reader:

We are all sailbirds
Cause the ocean's the sea
And lest ye don't fall
Please reach out to me

Michael F. Nyiri
Feb. 23, 1980


"On Poetry: An Essay"

Written by Michael F. Nyiri in 1982

The words escaping from my lips
Have seen the light of day before-
The apple of my love's delight
Has never shown it's core.
And as I read those words I wrote
They seem to mean less now
For as I have more things to say,
I've just forgotten how.
I'm all mixed up inside, you see.
Though I've said that too, I know.
And as I sit with turbulent mind
My words find it hard to flow.
I cannot say why I want to scream
Or why I'm crying, too.
Or why I think I'll never make sense
To anyone else or you.
"On Poetry" written
December 27, 1975


I am a painted canvas
Which you will have to read
And when you scratch the paint
To find out if I'm a copy
Then you will either love or hate me
And I cannot tell you
What will be the end result
Because I am such a bad analyst
When I try to analyze myself.
from "The Analyst", also12.27.75


Let us resolve the situation
Close the book and end the show
Let's touch each other with our eyes
And find out all that we don't know
written
November 25, 1978


Lover's little stranger
Sitting by the roadside
Hoping all his dreams come true.
Making up his fantasies
Wallowing in worries
Not much more can turn him blue
from
"Song About A Man I Know"
1971

It began at a timeworn desk, one of hundreds just like it, in a rubberstamped schoolroom in a rubberstamped town in a rubberstamped world with a rubberstamped mind......Mine.

I began writing words which rhymed and had a sort of rhythm, owrds which in some prehistoric way and to my prehistoric mind conveyed a sense of explanation about my situation and the world around me.

As time advanced and my vocabulary grew, and as other rubberstamped institutions attempted to mold my malleable mind like silly putty into societal acceptance, more words and phrases spilled from my brain to my notebooks, asking, answering, ad alleviating my naive, juvenile fears.

Love, justice, honor, all the old cliches took on an intense meaning. I felt I would fall in love. Alas, I took great pains to, but like all cliches, in time love justice and honor and a host of their brothers and sisters ran and reran themselves out of the projector and into the ground.

Time, a pretty well placed cliche itself, bore me less and less themes. My notebooks mildewed and fell away.

I prospered, rubberstamping my unique nonindividuality upon everything I did, making countless acquaintences which I naively believed were friendships, spouting countless cliched judgements and dogmas which I mistakenly believed were my own, and at some times I actually took out my poetry books and rubberstamped a stanza or two onto the printed page.

Events which stood out as boggling to my mind inevitably found themselves rewritten into tired themes on my notebook paper. As life itself taught me its own cliched truths, the rubber in my stamp began to wear away.

Where I was once analytical, yet thought provoking and loving, hopeful, trusting in my poetry, I became cynical, attaching myself thematically to death and hate, consequently harboring little desire to communicate with the people I'd thought I needed all my life.

Where my book of poetry, my "volume of experience", my "life on paper" once meant so much to my fledgeling writer's aura, it became a mocking, whining voice from the past, proving to me more and more that the more I reached out to touch humanity, the more humanity saw fit to recoil.

Finally, I broke the bond. I proclaimed "I don't need people" "I don't need poetry." I covered myself with a blanket of mistrust and drowned myself in alcohol, occasionally admitting to myself, but to no one else, that I was utterly wrong. From the frying pan into the fire. The pendulum swings all the way to the left, then all the way to the right.

The present. I am nearly two months sober. I still look at most people with distrust. I question myself and my world most wholeheartedly. What better time to pull out the old volumes: dust the pages off, and try to find myself again. It is a new year, a new situation. There is really no need for me to drown my inadequacies in cynicism now. I've accomplished what little I think I can in life, and now it's time to sit down and write again. Let the questions make way for answers and the cliches make room for reality.

For many years, I actually believed myself to be prophetic, a gifted chronicler of the human condition. Then when humanity grabbed me by the lapels, and proclaimed, "I'm not what you think I am." I stopped believing in myself.

I am only me. I do have a talent for words. And I should never forget that. I also have a need for humanity. Someday soon I'll satisfy that need. For a while, I forgot my poems. I should have been reading them. I'll remain "lover's little stranger" but I'll have a pen in my hand again.
Michael F. Nyiri
5-6 PM.
December 29th, 1982
Lomita, CA.


"Poetry: morphing electronic words serendipity online"

Written a few minutes ago. 1-22-2004

The poetry lives on and I haven't stopped writing. It is now 5:45 PM pst on Thursday evening, January 22, 2004. I reread words from the above introductions, from 1972 and 1982 respectively, and can't even believe that I have aged. I feel exactly the same, have the same revelations, the same old questions, and the same feeling that somehow I have been given a gift which I haven't yet figured out how to open.

There are three more introductions I might or might not add to this page. One is from 1974, and gives a detailed analysis of my "Suicide Poems". I explicated freely quite a few poems which substantially or offhandedly dealt with the subject of my own suicide, and served to give the dictum that since I wrote so vehemently about it, I would never have to accomplish the act. The first two pages of this introduction are missing. I probably began transcribing it and misplaced the pages in another binder of poetry or prose somewhere. I'll find them ten years from now. Another introduction is from 1977 in my really wiggy drugged out period, and doesn't make much sense. Neither of these will probably see publication. The third introduction is from 1980, and I use the words written in this introduction for the chapter headings for each year's verse listings on the site..

I have always believed my poetic gift was special, I have always shared my volumes, and still I crave readers, and I love to hear how some of the poems are able to touch a soul. The poem
"Tragedy" written the morning of September 12, 2001 inspired many, and I still treasure the entries in the guestbook on that page. I still think these poetic insights of mine matter,and even though the flow of words is merely a trickle at times, hopefully the words which I do write are somewhat meaningful. I've always believed that by "time-stamping" my poetry, and by chronologically listing the verse in the volumes and on-line gives the reader a sense of how one soul has travelled, experienced, loved, and lost, and given voice to what was happening as it was, and still is, happening. I still feel a rich rewarding surge of creative insight every now and then. Lately, the poems have become "history lessons" detailing the rift in humankind, and hopefully through verse I will find a way, museless or not, to empathize with humanity, and maybe become instrumental in causing my brothers to sit down and learn to live together before everyone kills everyone else. I have always thought I was able, like Shakespeare's Hamlet, to see both sides of any story, and I want to illustrate both ways of looking at a situation. I still feel sorry for mankind, because he can't learn to live together and appreciate that he will never agree. It's hopeless to fight, and he keeps killing himself. Nobody is listening to me yet, and those that do are doing the best they can in life to love thy neighbor and live together with him peacefully.

So the poetry marches on, as it were. I quote the words directly below from the introduction written in 1980. MFN 1-22-04

"Suffice it to say that the poet charts life, however inconsistent, with truth, and, as poets in the past have attempted, to infuse this truth with beauty, and create art.

"Sometimes he succeeds, and only so if the reader can recognize him or herself for the poet truly believes all thought processes are universal, and poets are merely the gifted few who mouth that universality.

"If the reader can understand by charting the poet's feelings throughout life, his link, and ultimately mankind's link with the universal mind, then the poet's purpose has been fulfilled.

"No poem is ever truly complete.
..because life rarely
if ever
can be called complete." MFN 3-13-80


I think
I feel
I cry
I shout
And I don't know
What the hell
I'm talking about
..................(a moment of introspection 12-12-77)

 

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