Sunday, February 7, 2016

Panthers vs Broncos: Who has the Best Fight Song?

photo © Mark Butkus 2012

Super Bowl L is upon us. While Vegas odds makers have the Carolina Panthers as 5 1/2 point favorites to win the game itself, the Bar None Group looked into which team had the better fight song. If we were taking odds on the fight songs the point spread would change considerably.

Let's first look at the Carolina Panthers fight song.

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Charles Bane Jr.'s The Chapbook — Why?

photo © Mark Butkus 2008

Because the heart is a climbing hill
and you are near its’ rise.

Because you are near when far,
and I feel ever close;

Friday, February 5, 2016

Things I've Lost at the Sand Bar

photo © Mark Butkus 2015
Late night at the Sand Bar in Barra de Navidad, Jalisco, Mexico.

My friends,
On more than one occasion.

My budget,
I only came in for one beer.

Friday, January 1, 2016

Poem One


What's the expected first line
on the first day of a New Year?

I don't know either.

Thursday, December 31, 2015

Elegy for an Almost Friend


Just because I don't have a _____ story
doesn't mean they didn't live a life.

Yeah, I knew them to see them,
And remember that big old ____ _____.

Saturday, December 19, 2015

First Lines Second Thoughts — Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol


First Lines Second Thoughts is a look at the first lines of well known literary works. On second thought, do these opening words stand alone as poetry? Today, in keeping with the spirit of the season we look at the opening lines of Charles Dickens' timeless A Christmas Carol.

Rather than write pamphlets and essays to address the issues of poverty and social injustice in Victorian England, Dickens conveyed his thoughts into A Christmas Carol. A book so cherished that it has never gone out of print since being published this day — December 19 — in 1843.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Jeff Parker Scores with Book of Found Poetry from the World of Sports

Every once in a while the Bar None Group takes a look at poetry in sports. Whether its a beatnik hockey commercial from a Bruin, a prognostication from The Greatest, a retirement notice from the Black Mamba or the wisdom of Metta World Peace. And with the latter we featured the former Ron Artest's own words poetically assembled by Jeff Parker.

Parker's found poetry poem — Erratic Fire, Erratic Passion also serves as the title of his latest book. Erratic Fire, Erratic Passion is a collection of found poems composed of the words of professional athletes.

Iconoclastic author Chuck Klosterman says, "There are many who refer to sports as poetry in motion, and there are some who argue that all conversation is a living form of poetry. These are both imperfect metaphors. But here is a book that takes the literal language of sports and converts it into the actual structure of poetry, and — sometimes, almost by accident — the result is actual perfection."

Monday, December 14, 2015

Remembering Hannah Szenes at Hanukkah

photo © Mark Butkus 2015
No, we didn't forget Hanukkah!

On the last day of Hanukkah we remember the poetry of Hannah Szenes. In particular, we recall her famous poem for Hanukkah; Blessed is the Match or as it is known in Hebrew, Ashrei Ha-Gafrur. The poem was the last she wrote before her execution.