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Russell Salamon

Russell Salamon Russell Salamon lives and writes in Los Angeles, CA. He has published many chapbooks and one "official" book: Descent into Cleveland, about growing up in Cleveland.

Contact Russell at thesalamons@earthlink.net

Spy from the Future

In the future we know meanings of all words so that poetry, a word art, once more carries news, real news. People use poetry to speak and listen to new creation. Here is a sample intercepted by our spy from the future.

Say those stars slowly
like molten stones giving off
hot springtimes, or say cold
stone-breaking winters. Make
natural laws natural like slow

A planet must be solid
so it can hold war or famine
or rainforests. It must be
made to bear fruit and blood.
But that was old-style century
management by slow decay and
slow growth of life forms.
It kept us busy for a long

But here, time is more fluid
like blue sea water, like
plankton gardens shining
iridescent forms of thought
and in that dense water,
like love, a liquid so alive
we drink sea wind and sea water.
We start to see from all
directions of time.

I see you from this angle
in the future. There you are,
your feet firmly on terra firma
and firmly on the road to freedom.
Some are still shooting friends
and refuse to go free, but most
of us are pushing light out of
the swamps and into leaves
of trees and into faces of
friends. Heaven is a group
activity. And so we build.

Brain Storming

Sam, an old man sat in a cafe, pretending
to read the paper, three cups of coffee
in a row paid sitting-rent. Across town
there was a meeting, he was listening
to the plans. Men were trying to buy
death with money again. Bill, a young
one, the lender, had no plan; it was his
father's money.

Sam looked from Bill's mind and whispered,
"Make them sign a non-pollution agreement,
with penalties if they violate it. Put in a life
form replacement clause. They must replace
the lives they take. That means hatcheries
and tree nurseries and clean water for fish."

"Have some cocaine," offered one of the
dark ones. He sensed too much intelligence
in Bill's space. Sam switched mind locations
and gave the dark one a brain flash, a jolt of
hot light. "Ow," said the darkest one. "I've
got it!" said Bill. "You may use the money
but only if you sign a non-pollution agreement,
and a life replacement clause. And you must
make your water clean for the salmon."

Sam turned the page of the newspaper.
"Warring Parties Refuse to Negotiate,"
the headline read. He searched the planet
until he found the mind that controlled both
sides of the conflict for personal profit, who
felt safe, hundreds of miles away, in another
country at a villa near the sea. Sam sipped
his coffee as he considered what to do.
He had a bright idea. He declared Logic War.
The man, shall we call him Greed, didn't know
what hit him. "Oh, no, I am having a Conscience
Convulsion! Call the doctor," he screamed at
his wife.

Sam showed Greed his future on a bald planet,
eating sand to make life habitable for
bacteria, for worms, for plants, for
higher life forms, rebuilding the planet
slowly. "You must bring back to life
what you kill." "What's the matter,
darling? his wife asked. "Call my
psychiatrist, I am having an attack.
Lightning is flashing in my brain."

"Not brain, mind," Sam corrected.

Battle Plan

Seventeen thousand of you
hide in reflections on the water.
The elf unit, take the south side
of the city. Bring as many as you need.
Millions is all right; bring shovels.

Those of you with music still ringing
in your ears from Palestrina choirs
stand here. We have them surrounded
with a bright future. You, backup troops,
hide in next Tuesday. When the city
sails forward in time, release the minds.

Be careful not to leave any leashes
on the hummingbirds. When we
attack there will be a lot of blood
in the streets. The symphony
orchestras will absorb it all,
not to worry.

Are you properly armed with long
range purposes? Let me see them.
Ten hut! Present time without
limits. Let's see those dreams.
Sleepers awake and present
the ramifications. Games.
Light. Snow falling on
mountains. Load. Ready.
On the count of three. Start!

The following is a series of "Hello" poems

Hello Dog,

Don't bark so loud.
You'll knock them all off.
The ground is already covered
with cherry blossoms.


Hello Cow,

Your moo smells
from iris flowers.


Hello Cat,

Good night, out you go.
I throw you out into
the smell of hyacinths.


Hello Frog,

Do you jump into
the reflected leaves
to hide?


Hello Sun,

You are warm today.
Yesterday, I had to use
the pot bellied stove.


Hello Sound,

After the violin,
do you become perfume?


Hello Music,

Are there sound-trees and
are you its delicious fruit?


Hello Bird,

Just stand there trembling;
it's all right. You were
nearly hit by lightning.


Hello Bird,

Your silver cry cuts space.
You must be hungry.


Hello Snow,

You are so white.
Have you been sleeping
on a sad lady's face?


Hello Rainbow,

Are you digging a hole
in the monutain to pour
your colors in?


Hello Flower,

Your perfume seems sweeter.
Was she crying here last night?


Hello Rain,

What a nice way to thank me.
My portait in raindrops.


Hello Car,

As you move, your headlights
extinguish the moonlight.


So there you are, cheese face.
What are you doing down in
that pond? I have been looking
for you in the sky: Hello Moon.


Hello Washbowl,

Washing my face in you--
my face leaps around
in your reflections.


Hello House,

As heat returns into my fingers,
I am happy I was out in the snow.


Hello Tree,

Your leaves are a green fire
where birds sit
warming themselves.


Hello Mist,

Rain is making thought sounds
as it falls on my hair.


Hello Fire,

I bend to smell you,
my eyebrows burn.


Hello Log,

You grin in the fire,
losing more and more


Hello Shadow,

When I am asleep,
do you meet your family
and play werewolves
in the front yard?


Hello Mud Footprints,

When the kids leave
do you walk away?


Hello Kids,

Your big laughing eyes
show through your
monster masks.


Hello Rock Music,

If she makes any more moves
that girl will fall apart
at the curves.


Hello Chicken's Knee,

You bend backwards.


Hello Jazz Concert,

Everyone is sitting
on little springs.


Hello Sheriff,

I wasn't speeding.


Hello Stream,

As I wade in you,
I stand inside the sky.


Copyright © 1999. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Duplication of this poetry and/or art without permission of the author/artist is forbidden under copyright law. Please ask permission if you wish to use for non-commercial purposes
  Big Cats in Snow Tuesday, July 11, 2000