If You Want to Read This, You Know What to Do.


I lie in bed at 3am
trying to write a poem.
My light is on
and I try not to disturb the crickets.
Their hearts have reached a resting state
and they are saving their songs for tomorrow.
They have discipline.
The loudest thing this morning
is my pen
The most impetuous thing this morning
is my mind
conspiring against the pen
haphazard on the page
scrawling into illegibility
which isn’t like me.

The Last Post for This Week Is A Poem

“Swept Up Whole”

You aren’t swept up whole,
however it feels. You’re
atomized. The wind passes.
You recongeal. It’s
a surprise.

Kay Ryan

And, an excerpt from the linked interview:

What do you think about the state of poetry and the reading of poetry in our country?

I never, ever worry about poetry or its survival because it’s the very nature of a poem to be that language that does survive. Poems are even better than tweets – they don’t require any electronic equipment. They can lodge right in your brain. They are by nature short. You don’t even have to remember all of them — you can remember just a phrase. That can be something you can turn to in any emergency, good or bad. You’ll pluck out a little group of words, just maybe a phrase, and that’s exactly what poetry is for. It’s for the things that really last. Because it lasts.


I found your letter the other day
My eyes a-round at the words it said
Did your heart pound as you wrote “Dear May”
As mine wound before it dead?

Your sure and steady manuscript
And pen full of ink equipped
Flowed into words of none clipped
While my soul into two, ripped.

Tears plunged onto the folded page
My mind lunged back to a fonder age
Our lives have ranged, as we bask in sage
The wage you won. Are we done?

Are we?

Un Autre Poème

En Français 202, nous étudions les Moyens Ages. Aujourd’hui, nous avons discuté Charles d’Orléans et sa poésie. Son poème, “Le Printemps”, est un rondeau. Ils sont faciles à identifier, parce que il y a un refrain, et le première et dernière lignes répètent.

Le temps a laissié son manteau
De vent, de froidure et de pluye,
Et s’est vestu de brouderie,
De soleil luyant, cler et beau.

Il n’y a beste, ne oyseau,
Qu’en son jargon ne chante ou crie :
Le temps a laissié son manteau
De vent, de froidure et de pluye.

Riviere, fontaine et ruisseau
Portent, en livrée jolie,
Gouttes d’argent d’orfaverie,
Chacun s’habille de nouveau :
Le temps a laissié son manteau.

De tout façon, en groupes, notre classe a écrit des rondeaus d’une saison. C’est ce que notre groupe a créé. Ils m’ont fait écrire et lire à haute voix. J’étais très nerveuse:

Les arbres se déshabillent
Les feuilles tombent lentement
Le terre accepte les vêtements des arbres

Les enfants jouent dans les feuilles
Il pleut avec rouge, orange, et jaune
Leurs joues deviennent rouge

Le soleil se couche
Tout le monde est tranquille
Les arbres se déshabillent

La classe a applaudit, parce que nous sommes génieux. Bien sûr.

Early New Year’s Morning

silver rind hangs from a sparkle
suspended in dark blue gloaming
that bleeds onto imposing indigo shadows
casting upon glowing pinkish silence
that will progress to a crunchy white
and reflect clarity
amidst brown bright noise
drowning frosted sighs
that wait
and dissipate
to answer to
the pallid pendulum
of that eternal
chromatic clock

He Forgets Not His Own

OVE bade me welcome; yet my soul drew back,
Guilty of dust and sin.
But quick-eyed Love, observing me grow slack
From my first entrance in,
Drew nearer to me, sweetly questioning
If I lack’d anything.
‘A guest,’ I answer’d, ‘worthy to be here:’
Love said, ‘You shall be he.’
‘I, the unkind, ungrateful? Ah, my dear,
I cannot look on Thee.’
Love took my hand and smiling did reply,
‘Who made the eyes but I?’
‘Truth, Lord; but I have marr’d them: let my shame
Go where it doth deserve.’
‘And know you not,’ says Love, ‘Who bore the blame?’
‘My dear, then I will serve.’
‘You must sit down,’ says Love, ‘and taste my meat.’
So I did sit and eat.

“Love” – George Herbert

I just sat at a table and feasted until I could feast no more. I’m always a little shy around strangers, but they didn’t turn me away. There was comfortable conversation and laughter, and while I wasn’t with any relatives, I felt like I was with family. Though I may have inwardly resisted, because this family’s brand of crazy is a little bit different than to what I am accustomed, I accepted the invitation. The host gave me grace, and I sat down.

So hopefully goes the time when I come to Love’s table. (Except after feasting at Love’s table, I don’t get merciless heartburn and my host has to give me medicine to relieve the pressure. I feel a lot better after a couple hours.)

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone. I am so very grateful for all of you. I have my reasons, which I’m also grateful for. 🙂