W.R. Baker

c/o Accountable Publishing

PO  Box 177, Marshall, CA 94940




from Lazarus Wigley

A PsychiatristÕs Notebook




4 Poems by William R. Baker

© 2010 by Accountable Publishing


For the Poets

In the Growing Terror of the Half-Light

At the Conference






For the Poets



From a blind I watch a troop

in the jungle –

big beautiful smart

who spend most of their time,

other than hunting,

imitating the actions and styles

of all the others.

Their bodies are geometrically perfect,

in fact, like a couple of geometric planes

fairly curving and showing me pictures

of themselves making love. 

Their spines glow with a red seal.

ItÕs a digital device of some kind

but I couldnÕt say for sure;

they are impossible to catch.




At the Conference


The waters are thick and delicious. 

The sky dotted

with white parasols and wisps of her hair. 

Only we here on earth are limited,

circumscribed.  She is always changing, always enchanting. 

All creatures contribute to her formation.


Is our evil a mistake, a miscalculation, or a result of our arrogance and pride? 

Maybe itÕs the microbial nature of life that seems evil to us. 

Our conscience tells us good and evil are battling for control. 

Our conscience whispers, weÕre here to protect. 

Are we deluded?


The human mind is obsessive by nature,

focused on survival.  Once people develop a history they enshrine it,

making it extremely difficult to break away from idolatry. 

As a psychiatrist my function is to act as a lightning rod

to sever the connections of the worshiper to the idol, to free them

into a world of cooperation and care. 

Here I have failed.




In the Growing Terror of the Half-Light


I climb around the spine of inner peace

down the moorings of collapsing Empire.

The dead are all around me,

Feeling my legs, touching

my once sylvan black hair

now caked with blood.

I hear Ian Bremmer say

ÒWe are not a fatigued superpower

not crippled in any way

but rather like Gulliver

Tied down by the Lilliputians.Ó


To its detriment mankind has

become addicted to crime.  Scientifically we are light years from the old days, but we

are psychologically retarded.  We have all the information we need

about the most productive methods of dealing

with human beings, but we ignore it.  

We treat human prisoners with less respect

than animals in a zoo.


Deeply woven into every society racism is rampant as ever,

but there are signs of progress.  Since the late 70Õs

we have been developing space, light and decent

food for most caged animals.  Perhaps

in the next decades we will shed the facades

of idealization and realize

we are all animals living in a Global Zoo.






I live on an island two miles wide

six miles long.

ItÕs got a lake, a river hills kinda

foresty mostly itÕs a savannah.

I have a house with all the trimmings.

I, have holograms –

My island is somewhere in

The solar system – far

Away from Earth

Or it could be in a parallel dimension

There is no sea, only an

impenetrable wall of air.

Fruit trees, berry bushes, fish

and game galore.  The weather

varies but there are no extremes.

ItÕs a similar feeling to the Caribbean,

without the hurricanes.


My father and I have been talking for, at least,

One month or so he says.  He also says heÕs real

And one of my problems is that I isolate myself

from people – a schizophrenic trait.

Today weÕre discussing whoÕs right

and does it matter?


I turn him off and turn on The Individualism of Gil Evans.  In the midst of a full blown

orchestra a tweaking sound is heard.  Faint at first, barely gaining in strength, simply

and somewhat annoyingly repeated, insured.


Suddenly itÕs gone.  ItÕs been absorbed by the reeds, part of the whole – completely non-obtrusive.