Saturday, June 29, 2013

Published in, Fire Pearls 2: Short Masterpieces of Love and Passion, Keibooks

the radio 
overrides her whimpers. . . 
the manic's
sperm smeared
on her thighs

summer's end
your body travels
through my mind 
a hurricane 
on an indiscreet corner

the end of questions—
love incomplete 
you kiss my back, 
excite yourself 
with my body

some nights 
we made love, slept
arm to arm. . . 
brittle eucalypt
unwrapped by the mist

the secret room 
where you laid on my hammock. . . 
what if I cannot talk 
of the sound of your voice,
the days you still arouse me

the two of us 
walking by the sea. . . 
naked at sunrise
we crawl into each other's skin,
wait for the moon to wane

a fish out of water
this body of mine 
hot in the moonlight 
subject to your pull
like tides beneath the moon

trickles from chest 
to belly button. . . 
the memory of his abdomen 
as I moisten my lips

my scent missing 
from her body, 
shed with her clothes. . . 
crushed cotton scattered
from the floor to the bed

listen to me,
seagulls that cry 
like a great sad wheel—
the day my lover died 
I rode a horse for hours

your body 
moonbathing on my bed
in its dream state
I stop to surround your breath
and hear other songs

the cresent moon
is her reflection,
tilted back 
waning wide open. . . 
I step inside her kiss

I relish you
as the meeting of wind
and spinning vane
as a child worships the newness
of the world

if rain 
knew loneliness and fear 
could it still be rain. . . 
am I just another man drifting 
to the edge of your life

ships at the port 
of my imagination. . .
as the heroes of Olympus
who knows where they go?

Published in, Fire Pearls 2:  Short Masterpieces of Love and Passion,

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

NeverEnding Story
First English-Chinese Bilingual Haiku and Tanka Blog

One Man's Maple Moon: Relationship 
Tanka by Sergio Ortiz

Chinese Translation
by Chen-ou Liu

English Original

to say goodbye…
a fraction
of me touching you
in secret places

Breath and Shadows

Sergio Ortiz

Chinese Translation (Traditional)
by Chen-ou Liu


Chinese Translation (Simplified)
by Chen-ou Liu


Saturday, June 22, 2013

Keibooks: Fire Pearls 2 : Short Masterpieces of Love and Passion Published in Print and Ebook


Jun 19

Fire Pearls 2 : Short Masterpieces of Love and Passion Published in Print and Ebook

Please post to all appropriate venues.

Fire Pearls 2 : Short Masterpieces of Love and Passion, edited by M. Kei, is the sequel to the classic anthology of tanka poetry in English. Showcasing 750 poems by over 90, poets representing seventeen countries on five continents, Fire Pearls 2 is double the size of the original volume. Now available in paperback and Kindle e-book at and other retailers, it is also available wholesale to libraries and other venues. 

From the Introduction:

“The poets of Fire Pearls lead us from the delights of first love to the fury of betrayal, the mourning of death to the rage of vengeance. Along the way they yearn, court, marry, divorce, have children, have parents, grow sick, grow old, travel, lust, regret, repent, celebrate, survive, have second chances, get lucky, and die. Their experiences range from the luminescence of love to the violence of rape, and their decisions range from the choice of jewelry to the agony of abortion. Poets of all different races and colors depict all sorts of relationships: romantic, familial, dysfunctional, friendly, clandestine, faithful, adulterous, heterosexual, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered, single, married, divorced, widowed, lonely—even bigamy. The ten chapters of Fire Pearls cover the breadth and depth of the human heart. The reader will find their own loves and hates within these pages.”--M. Kei, Editor

Like its predecessor, the poems of Fire Pearls 2 are arranged into a tanka sequence—the longest published in English. Subdivided into ten chapters based on the seasons, each poem links and leaps to the next, but in keeping with the tanka tradition, dreaming room is provided for the reader to make their own associations. Fire Pearls 2 is an essential acquisition for lovers of fine literature.

The Contributors: 

Abigail Greene, Adelaide B. Shaw, Alexander Jankiewicz, Allison Miller, Amelia Fielden, André Surridge, Angie LaPaglia, Anne Benjamin, Aubrie Cox, Autumn Noelle Hall, Barbara A. Taylor, Belinda Broughton, Bob Lucky, Britton Gildersleeve, Bruce D. Reed, Bruce England, Carole Harrison, Charlotte A, Chen-ou Liu, Christina Nguyen, Claire Everett, Clive Oseman, Cynthia Rowe, Darrel Lindsey, David Caruso, David Rice, David Terelinck, Dawn Bruce, Don Miller, Dorothy McLaughlin, Elaine Riddell, Ernesto P. Santiago, Ferris Gilli, Fran Witham, Genie Nakano, gennepher, Geoffrey Winch, Gerry Jacobson, Gregory Longenecker, Ingrid Kunschke, Jade Pandora, James Chessing, Janet Lynn Davis, Janette Hoppe, Jeanne Lupton, Jennifer Thompson, Jenny Fraser, Jenny Ward Angyal, Jim Schneider, Joanne Morcom, Johana West, Joy McCall, Joyce S. Greene, Kala Ramesh, Kath Abela Wilson, Katherine Raine, Kirsten Cliff, LeRoy Gorman, Lorne Henry, M. Kei, m l grace, Magdalena Dale, Margaret Chula, Margaret Dornaus, Margaret Van Every, Marilyn Humbert, Mark Kaplon, Matsukaze, Max Ryan, Michael McClintock, Michele L. Harvey, Mike Montreuil, Nu Quang, Owen Bullock, Pamela A. Babusci, Patricia Prime, Penny Harter, Pravat Kumar Padhy, Ram Krishna Singh, Randy Brooks, Raquel D. Bailey, Roary Williams, Rodney Williams, S. M. Abeles, Sanford Goldstein, Seren Fargo, Sergio Ortiz, Sonam Chhoki, Stacey Dye, Sylvia Forges-Ryan, Tess Driver, Tracy Davidson, Tzetzka Ilieva. 

About the Editor: 

M. Kei is a tall ship sailor and award-winning poet. He is the editor-in-chief of Take Five : Best Contemporary Tanka, and the editor of Atlas Poetica : A Journal of Poetry of Place in Contemporary Tanka. His second collection, of Slow Motion : The Log of a Chesapeake Bay Skipjack, is Recommend Reading by the Chesapeake Bay Project.  He is also the author of a gay Asian-themed science fiction/fantasy novel, Fire Dragon. He can be followed on Twitter @kujakupoet, or visit

Fire Pearls 2 : Short Masterpieces of Love and Passion
Edited and with an Introduction by M. Kei
Published by Keibooks, Perryville, Maryland, USA
284 pp, paperback
ISBN: 978-1489595027 (print)
$18 USD (print) / $9.99 (Kindle e-book)

When you buy direct from the printer, a greater share of the cover price goes to the creator.

making love

making love
to an old man
is like fucking
a wimp, droopy cornstalk
blackened by mold

Friday, June 21, 2013

Llamar al viento

¡Llamar al viento
allá donde no habita
la nostalgia,
ni solloza el adiós
de un amor moribundo!

¡Donde solo soy el reflejo
de la soledad!
irme perdiendo en la callada
distancia de la nada.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Hoy soy ola de abandono

Hoy soy ola de abandono,
como decir caricia derribada,
como decir paloma sin alas,
como decir noche rasgada al amor callado.

No llegaste a sentirme danzar sobre tu piel,
y soñarte recostado sobre mi pecho—
¿Tú y yo, un horizonte cazando estrellas?

¡No!  Te sacare del tiempo
como huellas de canciones frente al mar,
como un lirio de luz que floreció en mis manos.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Cruzando el Mar

Cruzando el Mar

Me vi llorando
sobre la piedra más dura,
en el rincón perdido
donde comienza el viento…

Cruzando el mar
con remos de roció,
abandonado, derribado
en las sílabas de un “no te quiero”…

Y pasó la agonía de la noche
muriéndose en el fondo de una rosa…
Y pasó el alba aupándose   
sobre mis montañas…
Y fue tan solo una ráfaga húmeda
que se izó en mis pupilas.

Dos siglos de auroras
tirándose al paisaje.


Thursday, June 13, 2013


“Cuando te hablen de amor y de ilusiones,”

                                    José Alfredo Jiménez 

Soy melodía
de un amor que no es mío,
álgebra del aire remoto
que asciende desde
los sepulcros.

ir perdiéndome
en aquel espacio perfecto
donde la piel      
termine de pudrirse.  


Monday, June 10, 2013

Sin Sonidos

Sin sonido

Aquí estoy, todo estático menos la sangre.
Una sombra me golpea cuando despierta el cuerpo.

Aquí mi viaje es una espina agonizante
que insiste en borrar las riberas del mar.         

Aquí las estrellas tiemblan del miedo 
al escuchar mi canción despedazada.

Aquí la muerte es prestada,
infértil féretro de alas.

Saturday, June 08, 2013

Hacia adentro

Hacia adentro

Llegaste a mi vida                                       
removiéndome el polvo
de los años,
inundando el corazón
de muelles.

Ahora el mutismo
es la fórmula de tu arrogante
orgullo, y tus surcos
enredan mis pasos.


Yo caminaba
a ciegas
sobre mi propia senda
ceñido en el misterio
de no ser hembra.


Mi isla abrió de nuevo
sus heridas
para hacerme ausencia
en tus palmeras.

¿Dónde está la muerte?
¿En qué agujero acompaña
al juego de luces de una vela?
No quiero este tiempo repetido,

ni el tímido silencio de una dalia. 

Friday, June 07, 2013



Soy resplandor
de madrugadas fijas,
eco sin tiempo
que vuela al infinito.

Eres el seductor de mi reposo
que escala el acantilado
de mi geografía
donde todo se convierte
en fuego.

Raro que no nos sigan
vertientes de ríos negros.

(Será que el espejo se deshoja
como una emoción refinada
en tus manos…)

¡No hables! ¡Tu silencio
lo quiero salvaje!

Thursday, June 06, 2013

Solo en un banquillo mirando a un gorrión

Solo en un banquillo mirando a un gorrión

Racimos trémulos
de desnudas soledades,
estéril desierto
de pensativa escarcha,
tu vida sin recuerdos.
El otoño no quiere mirar tus ojos
pues estás muerto.  
Eres brisa triste entre los narcisos.



O weeping muse                        
you make me fall
into a thick misty river;
the tundra where my poems gather.

…Madness enters with the wind;
the jolt of a wild animal
thrashing from a spasm,
his eyes seek mine.

O my first dead,
which winter squall
carries my disordered pages,
the shroud of tears we will inhabit,
the grave where all spit
their epitaphs?

Tuesday, June 04, 2013

Calma me soledad

Calma mi soledad

Calma mi soledad
con el placentero anonimato
de la muerte.

Alarga la vía de regreso
hacia el mar infinito
de mi infancia.

Camina despacio sobre el incendio
de un amanecer que detiene
todos los sonidos.

Oculta la palabra y sus sentidos
bajo el anzuelo desnudo
de tu mirada.

Ignora el temor del bañista
en el turbio eco de un océano
guiado por intuiciones de colores ahorcados.

Separa la noche con tu rostro de hambre
de la estéril lágrima
abandonada al descuido.  

Ay, mi soledad, tertulia insatisfecha,
acertijo de bastos para la ausencia

de los tropos. 

Monday, June 03, 2013

Published in Poets International, The Peregrine Muse

Published in:
Poets International
contemporary poetry from around the world

sorrow’s home

war raged in Vietnam
and peace burst out of flowers …
there’re battle lines
being drawn, nobody’s right
if everybody’s wrong

when I was a child
I knew encyclopedias
and dictionaries
and wire clothes hangers
beating on my skin

I looked the other way
as long as playmates
groped me like a girl
and wanderlust
nurtured me

I sought adventure
in the shady closet
where my stepfather
littered my pride
and pain

my people
floundered in dark clubs
rooms where perfumed
rainbows glistened

Orpheus’s death

when I wrote
of men folding in their tight skins
like apples —
apples swelling inside me —
it was a mask

when I wrote
of a god singing
and dancing
near the window —
it was a mask

there are no apples
filling my hunger,
no god folding
in his skin,
there is only the memory

of my self
torn at birth
by my own music

Tanka # 101

Why must she fret,
this fragrant rose …
is she not meant
to know the essence
of her own red bloom?

Sunday, June 02, 2013



Qué escuchas
me pregunto.
Has colmado
de raíces
mis espacios,
la melodía
de mi hambre,
la sed de mi piel.
Yo busco
mi propia
en este hotel
en ruinas.
Qué escuchas…

Sino la lluvia.

Saturday, June 01, 2013

Tu sexo

Tu sexo

Extraño tu sexo ciñéndose
a mi lengua.

Amo tu racimo de sudores

la gota de coñac que resbala
por tu muslo
con la indiferencia de una nube
que se aleja.

Amo tus claras humedades:
la de tu esperma tramposa
la de tus ojos llorosos.

Mi silencio con sus fauces

te rodea.



Caes más allá de tu savia
como un pálido recuerdo
trocado en blasfemia
de lágrimas.
Y en ti mi corazón
es un círculo de fuego
que se torna en sal oscura
sobre tus playas.
Y soy naufrago de sombras,
sueños confusos que guardan

el recuerdo silencioso del agua.

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