Sunday, November 30, 2008

Triple Sonnet of the Plush Pony Part 3

I'm excited to see Anne Carson's latest collaborations, Stacks and Bracko, with sculptor Peter Cole and choreographer Jonah Bokaer. I've admired Carson's work-- The Glass Essay, Plainwater, Autobiography of Red and The Beauty of the Husband have been important. I return often to her translations of Sappho, If Not Winter, and Grief Lessons, four plays by Euripides. The reading/performance is to be staged at NYU later in the week.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

thank you


And it was at that age...Poetry arrived
in search of me. I don't know, I don't know where
it came from, from winter or a river.
I don't know how or when,
no they were not voices, they were not
words, nor silence,
but from a street I was summoned,
from the branches of night,
abruptly from the others,
among violent fires
or returning alone,
there I was without a face
and it touched me.

I did not know what to say, my mouth
had no way
with names,
my eyes were blind,
and something started in my soul,
fever or forgotten wings,
and I made my own way,
that fire,
and I wrote the first faint line,
faint, without substance, pure
pure wisdom
of someone who knows nothing,
and suddenly I saw
the heavens
and open,
palpitating plantations,
shadow perforated,
with arrows, fire and flowers,
the winding night, the universe.

And I, infinitesimal being,
drunk with the great starry
likeness, image of
felt myself a pure part
of the abyss,
I wheeled with the stars,
my heart broke loose on the wind.

--Pablo Neruda

Sunday, November 23, 2008

who I'm reading


In the spider and on the web. On the branch
and in the pothole. Yellowed grass, wilted
fern, blackened growth. On the skeletal
stems of black-eyed Susans and in dawn's
stretch.  The glint of street lights. The sibilant
mulberry behind blinds.  Empty sky. Listen
to these old windows,
how they lend themselves to rattle.

Suzanne Frischkorn
from Lit Windowpane

The God Chain
Priest River, Idaho

Anchor sheen trout tulip under yellow wood flicks its goose aside,
holds hot the malediction kitchen march, oh marvelous me puddle
pulsing the river's run.  He speaks static, flicks the bristled coat and
ducklings disappear easier into every field's floor.  It is an arrow
bath clogging and cracking the code under the milk skirt snow.

Rebecca Loudon
from cadaver dogs

Two incredible books. Plus time spent roaming a swath of Woodlawn
Cemetary. Amazing statues. Lots of angels. Not every angel is demure or
holy, as Milton knew. 

Sunday, November 9, 2008


from Edmond Jabes
The Book of Margins if all the truth transported by the book--this
portion of dark where the light wears thin--
were but an approach to death, for which
writing is both a piece of luck
and a misfortune; a death becomes ours
through every word, every letter, through sounds
and silence, where sense is only what makes
sense of the adventure.
As if, moreover, in order to make sense,
this adventure needed the deep sense of words,
their multiple meanings,
which are but focal points of their radiance.

The point here being that I've accumulated work enough for another book, dare I write this, world, whoever you are...and so the work begins again, with the point also being that there's sorting and re-reading and assemblage and revision/ new understandings--an adventure for sure--courage, roll up the sleeves.

Saturday, November 8, 2008


everywhere leaves, especially
if you live in the woods,
particularly with regard to oak,
last to let go, still holding on,
thus my free time is spent 
these days raking, blowing 
and dealing with leaves, 
as they cling or fall