My first attempts at Scifaiku

Robots learn rules from their peers,
Meaning from patterns.

Vested networks of
Degenerate wetware wield
Vast robot legions.

No parity check;
Will your calculator find
Silicon Heaven?

Geeks attempt global
Mutual understanding;
Church leaders protest.

Viral marketing
Campaign used effectively
For selling MemeShield.

Coulter's Only Faithful Fan

Read about Ann Coulter's new book.

O Ann, I am your only faithful fan.
Conservatives may buy your books, but they
Don't see your ploy, your pocket-lining plan

To market pseudoscience to your prey
By tugging on their xenophobic fears.
I love the way you gather what they say,

Then sell it, packaged—all they want to hear.
But Ann, my love, the thing that stokes my lust
Is seeing you, so confident, sincere,

Presenting crap, but getting them to trust
Like babies. Through your ballsy lies I can
Adore the noxious dreck that should disgust.

Naively, they respect you as a man;
O Ann, I am your only faithful fan.

(Crossposted from PhaWRONGula)

For destruction Frost is also great

What if, instead of teacher, farmer and botanist, Robert Lee Frost had been a software geek?

I have been one acquainted with the code.
I have debugged, with sources and without.
I have recursed and watched my stack explode.

I have outsourced through times of talent drought.
I have despaired when projects overrun
On schedules pert with hope and gant of doubt.

I have denied the pigment of the sun
And bested night on caffeine pulse and will.
This exponential journey I've begun

(As kiddies swarm, precoc'd with leeter skill,
Uncultured by the baggage that has slowed
My uptake rate) may seem quixotic. Still,

I come with nerdy aptitude bestowed;
I have been one acquainted with the code.

Software Geek Haiku

Last day before freeze;
Feel the fragility of
Unguided design.

This should have been written a couple of days ago. Now that the software in question is frozen there's time to stop and rant at the unbelievably inept interface design that caused last minute defects.

Geek & Goth Valentines

Valentine's Day approaches. It's that special time of year when you can express your undying love for...

florists, greeting card companies, and chocolate manufacturers. (I do profess a certain fondness for the last.) This year I shall do my part to diminish the profits of card companies by providing, free of charge, an assortment of short verses that you may use in hand-crafted missives to your Valentine. These verses are guaranteed to claim the hearts of their recipients (or your money back).

Geek Valentines (Budget Constrained)

Roses are red
Violets are blue
Until I get work
Here's a cheap IOU.

Roses are red
Violets are blue
I'm allergic to both
So will text graphics do?

Geek Valentines (Hormone Driven)

Roses are red
Violets are blue
Come and party tonight
Bring your twin sister too.

Lan-party for two. Early start.
Beat my frag-count: we'll dine, a la carte,
At the Hilton, first class.
But if I pwn your a$$
Then you pose for my comic book art.

Geek Valentines (Socially Challenged)

For you, here's a Valentine's card
To show my persistent regard.
I must (my friends said)
Get you out of my head,
But your webcam is making it hard.

Your insistent admirer is me.
Your beauty, it longs to be free.
Your elegant form
Leaves me tingling and warm
As I watch from your neighbour's oak tree.

Goth Valentines

Roses are red,
Violets are blue,
But since they're not black
They're simply not you.

Roses are black,
Violets are black;
I've tailored your gift
With my airbrushing pack.

Blood is so red,
Lilies, so white;
Would you share my pain
On St Valentine's night?

Blood is so red,
Lilies, so white;
Your mood is so dark
You make midnight seem light.

The Dance at Hruni

Last year the Yule Cat stalked my journal as I explored a story from Iceland's Christmas tradition. This year I'll take another story, The Dance at Hruni, and add my own flourishes to the dance. Here's a quick summary of the story.

The priest at Hruni made a habit of hosting extended merriment on Yule Eve. His old mother, Una, disapproved and urged him to start the church service, but he insisted on "one more round." Una heard someone recite, "Hátt lætur í Hruna,/ hirðar þangað bruna./ Svo skal dansinn duna,/ að drengir megi það muna./ Enn er hún Una,/ og enn er hún Una," which means "Loud noises at Hruni,/ People hurry there./ Let the dance continue,/ so men will that remember./ Still is Una,/ and still is Una." Outside Una saw a stranger and knew that he was the source of the verse and figured he was the devil. She saddled up and went to bring back another priest to save her son. When they returned the church had been swallowed up by the earth and the people inside could be heard wailing underground. (More at The Yule Pages.)

While reading about the extended untoward merriment, a Leonard Cohen song came to mind. (If you're familiar with it, you'll recognise my unashamed borrowing of rhythm and form. If not, then let me encourage you to listen to Leonard. You've been missing out.) Here's my interpretation of the Dance at Hruni:

Oh! at Hruni's church they're chanting
But it's cheers all prayers supplanting,
With the "holy" spirit flowing fast and free;
And my son, the priest, is playing
Host to punters while delaying
Yule devotions and evading prods by me.
And I close my eyes to the tragic truth
As I try to warn my wayward youth,
But his congregation forms a conga line,
Singing, "God can wait for one more round;
This wondrous night we're glory-bound.
In our hearts and heads the Babe is crowned
As Heavenly King of the lightly drowned:

Yes, they cut the decks and roll the dice
And they dance together to the edge of vice.
You mark my words, they'll pay the price.
May't please the Lord, I've warned them thrice:

Then I hear a voice rehearsing
And I hope it isn't cursing;
In its rhythmic verse I know I hear my name.
"Still is Una," is the ending
Of an omen or a sending.
There's a stranger standing outside; he's to blame
For the devilish vague and veiled threat,
For the voice of dread, for the shivering sweat
That forced me to attend his telling rhyme.
And within his smile I see the beast.
I saddle, race for the nearest priest
To save the fools from the devil's feast
And free them all (my son at least).

Returned, the flock cannot be found,
Sunk fast beneath their godless ground,
Yet from below, a longing sound:
"Hey Leifur, pour another round!

War on Christmas?

I'll give 'em War on Christmas. It's time to subvert a carol.

Joy to the world, the warming comes!
Let winter turn to spring;
To future lives let sense be numb,
And climate chaos bring,
And climate chaos bring,
And climate, climate chaos bring.

Joy to the earth, our ice sheets shrink;
Let men old fuels employ
In guzzling tanks that drive to drink,
Replete with big-toy joy,
Replete with big-toy joy,
Replete, replete with big-toy joy.

No more let nerds and boffins crow,
Nor greens our gains constrain;
These dreary dorks don't have the dough
To push a press campaign,
To push a press campaign,
To push, to push a press campaign.

We rule the world with graft and guile;
All problems we deny;
And by the time we go to trial
Your whistleblower's shy;
No doubt you wonder why;
You see, our corporation's rules apply.


I decided to toy with the triolet.

Why? Because it's a compact form with tight constraints on meter and rhyme. It piques my penchant for word puzzles. It challenges me to use the enforced repetition (with its song-like patterns) to pull different meanings out of a very few words.

While wandering an endless way
I found another. Life is full
of threads that twist, or tear and fray
while wandering an endless way.
No light invited me to stay,
no cheery hearth, no homeward pull.
While wandering an endless way
I found another; life is full.

Feral Fascinations

Don't be afraid to tell me where you've been
As though I wouldn't understand the lure
Of wildness when compared with dull routine.
You'll never know what's howling on the moor
Unless you leave the mansion's nervous light
And gratify your passion to explore.
Don't worry that I'll run away in fright
Or shudder with revulsion and disdain
On finding you've been dancing with the night.
I'll never need to ask you to explain
Your feral fascinations and that spark
Of quickening your bearing can't contain.
Don't be afraid to lead me through the dark:
Those paw prints that you're following--they're mine.

Tap Dancing

He's Terrence the talented tap dancing tapir;
He struts with staccato; he stomps.
He proudly peruses reviews in the paper—
The raves for his rollicking romps.
With intricate clamor he clowns and he capers
To audiences awed at his art.
He's Terrence, a tormented tap dancing tapir
Who's hurting and heavy of heart...

While at the ballet in his tux and toupee
(To crank up his cultural learning)
A tapir, Bettina, a lean ballerina
Awakened an uncontrolled yearning.
She was svelte; she was slender; he swooned and surrendered
His soul at first sight to this dancer,
But the bouquet of blooms that he sent to her room
Was returned to our luckless romancer:

"Dear Terrence 'the talented tap dancing tapir',
So sorry to send back your gift.
Bettina's in need of no noisy shoe-scraper;
Distractions don't pay. Get my drift?
She shall not be catching the clog-clodding capers
You wryly refer to as 'art'.
In short, she's no time for a tap dancing tapir.
Sincerely, Bett's Manager, Bart."

Thus Terrence was thwarted; his cast was contorted;
In rage he could only see red.
Beset and besotted, he pondered and plotted
How Bart might be better off dead.
It chafed him and chewed him; each night it imbued
All his dreams with interminable torments,
So one night at Bart's flat—boots and cane, bowler hat—
He produced an impromptu performance.

Now Terrence (the talented tap dancing tapir)
Took breakfast and read of Bart's end.
"Police were perplexed," so it said in the paper,
"As to why one would trample the friend,
Mentor, manager, muse, chaperone and star-shaper
Of prima-performer Bettina."
At this our victorious tap dancing tapir
Guffawed like a half-wit hyena.

When tired of his braying he wrote to her saying,
"Dear Bettina, I offer my heart.
I guess my last gift had been given short shrift
By your kind but unfortunate Bart.
Though these flowers may fade, though my script be clichéd,
Still I'll struggle with pen and notepaper
To praise your perfection and offer affection,
Yours, Terrence, the tap dancing tapir."

Now Bett the athletic balletic performer
Was not too upset about Bart;
He was overprotective and lacking perspective
On issues pertaining to art.
In her dancing career it was her turn to steer
And she needed no drag from an anchor,
So to Terrence she wrote, going straight for the throat
Of this creepy old chauvinist canker:

"I saw you, you pig, in tuxedo and wig,
How you fixed on my feminine figure.
Then you ogled my thighs and I thought that your eyes
Would explode if they grew any bigger.
No, I don't need a randy old tap dancing dandy
To leer at my leotard with lust.
If your stalking won't cease I shall call the police
- Bettina in dread and disgust."

Now he's Terrence the talented tap dancing tapir;
He struts in his stories; he stomps.
He proudly peruses reviews in old papers—
The raves for his rollicking romps.
In colorless clamor he crows of his capers,
"Too good for that tutu-clad whore!"
He's Terrence, the talented tap dancing tapir,
Life sentenced, in cell twenty-four.

Syndicate content