Friday, November 30, 2012

I Am Learning to Abandon the World by Linda Pastan

My Blythe-girl, Zooey. 


I Am Learning to Abandon the World
By Linda Pastan
I am learning to abandon the world
before it can abandon me.
Already I have given up the moon
and snow, closing my shades
against the claims of white.
And the world has taken
my father, my friends.
I have given up melodic lines of hills,
moving to a flat, tuneless landscape.
And every night I give my body up
limb by limb, working upwards
across bone, towards the heart.
But morning comes with small
reprieves of coffee and birdsong.
A tree outside the window
which was simply shadow moments ago
takes back its branches twig
by leafy twig.
And as I take my body back
the sun lays its warm muzzle on my lap
as if to make amends.
Goodbye to November!!  You've been a wild month.  xo

Monday, November 26, 2012

Rumi Rocks

Sunrise/Sunset? at Casa Dragonfly

Does sunset sometimes look like the sun is coming up?
Do you know what a faithful love is?
You're crying; you say you've burned yourself.
But can you think of anyone who's not hazy with smoke?
Steaming fence after rain.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Girl In Chair by Mary Biddinger

My newest poet-crush is Mary Biddinger.  I say this often, but it's always a great day when you discover an amazing new poet.  Support poets!  Buy Poetry! 
Also, check out her blog: Wordcage.
This is one of my favorite poems from this book.  I had a really hard time choosing just one poem to post because they're all superb.  This is my favorite because I love the imagery:
Girl In Chair
By Mary Biddinger
The streets sew themselves
a beaded mat you can buy
every night.  Catfish in bed
with the rushes.  Everything
sleeping deep together.
Needlepoint is half blood
most of the time.  You miss
once, twice, by the window.
How else to stitch flowers,
or the red mailbox waiting
for a postman’s blue vest.
All a game of in and out.
Blood waiting to dump
its oxygen, the mosquito
and waxwing, storm fronts
quaking above as moths.
A seam-ripper hacks
the work in seconds, string
cut to a quarter.  Your love
is the one sunk, midnight
in the Monongahela.  How
did you not wake when
the river broke like a pane?
A page slits your fingertip
but you keep turning.  Now
the cicadas start their fall
from tree to lawn.  Cherry
blossoms ride the gutters.
Lightning on the air, men
chasing their hats home.
From:  “Prairie Fever” by Mary Biddinger, pages 53, 54
(The Monongahela is a river on the Allegheny Plateau in north-central West Virginia and southwestern Pennsylvania.)
+ + + + + + + + + +
"Saint Monica" by Mary Biddinger
+ + + + + + + + + +
and her newest book, coming soon:  "O, Holy Insurgency"
+ + + + + + + + + +
"Poetry is life distilled." ~Gwendolyn Brooks
+ + + + + + + + + +
Happy Thanksgiving!
For each new morning with its light,
For rest and shelter of the night,
For health and food, for love and friends,
For everything Thy goodness sends.
~Ralph Waldo Emerson
+ + + + + + + + + + 


Saturday, November 17, 2012

My Heart Lifted...

I potted this tiny plant in March.  I watered it and cared for it all summer.  I was patient.  Yesterday, November 16, 2012, it produced one perfect white flower.  I went outside this morning and it was pink. I swear to you, my heart lifted. I live for surprises like this.
* * * * *

"I slept the afternoon, but you know what Breton says: I was not in the mood for visitors. Picture yourself inside that word. And yes, my house is a word, but my words, aren’t they words also? Today, the sky just wouldn’t happen. Today, I was blind-sided. Neither pain, nor its powdered absence. Like most days, I became the kitchen sill. I’m simply saying what I always say: what is lace-winged cannot be strong."

Olena Kalytiak Davis, from:  "And Her Soul Out Of Nothing", page 3

* * * * *

"I'm feeling terrifically heavy.
I'm feeling as well-grounded as the dead."  ~Olena Kalytiak Davis, page 19

* * * * *

"Oh, my cloud covered heart." ~Olena Kalytiak Davis, page 3

* * * * *

Thursday, November 15, 2012

40 Love Letters by Jeanann Verlee

I love Ms. Verlee's book, "Racing Hummingbirds" from which this poem, "40 Love Letters" comes.  I'm on my second copy because I tore out several poems and sent to friends.  :-)
Enjoy!  Support Poets.  BUY POETRY!!!
40 Love Letters
By Jeanann Verlee

Dear Dennis,
I still think of you.
Dear Andre,
I saw you kiss her.
I haven’t looked back.
Dear Patrick,
You’re just too young.
Dear Eric,
I said horrible things about
Your teeth are fine,
it’s the rest of you I don’t
Dear Greg,
Thank you for the poem, for
every single scar.
Dear William,
I love you, simple.
I like that we will never be we.
Dear Jay,
The bruises fell off
Dear Michael,
I’ll never be enough to fill
the shoes
that will one day stand at
your side.
Dear Ben,
I did read your letters.
All of them.
Dear Freeman,
I’ll never stop looking over
my shoulder,
boots laced, ready to run.
Dear Jon,
I’ll always love you.
You are all there ever was.
Dear Derek,
There was no one thing,
your everything is
Dear Eddie,
We are refracting magnets.
We will battle this to the
Dear Dennis,
I still think of you.
Dear Ryan,
I love you, simple.
Sex under the streetlight was
a delicious accident.
Dear Kevin,
Your kiss came too late.
My lips were already dancing
in the other room with Jon.
Dear Ethan,
Dear Joseph,
I said you were too pretty.
They said to try it anyway.
They are fools.
Dear Avery,
You are the definition of unrequited.
Dear Skippy,
I’m sorry about the whiskey
and the tampon.
I’m sorry I never called you.
Dear Nate,
Until you mocked my smile, I
was yours.
Dear Marc,
I like your wife too much.
Is your brother still single?
Dear Mitch,
You were my biggest mistake.
I’m sure that only makes your
smile more sinister.
Dear Allen,
While you poured Guinness for
I pictured you bending me
over the bar.
Dear Graham,
I’d have swallowed that
Dear Miguel,
You said a man never forgets
his first redhead.
What color are my eyes?
Dear Dennis,
I still think of you.
Dear Francis,
I’d have broken you in half.
Dear Chris,
I’m sorry I stalked you.
I’d try to forget me, too.
Dear Dex,
I can’t be with you again.
Just accept it.
Dear Dr. Matthews,
I’ll have you fired.
Dear Aiden,
I wrote a poem about you.
It’s everyone’s favorite.
I find it trite.
Dear Logan,
I think I finally stopped
wanting you.
Dear Cynthia,
I was drunk.
I thought you were, too.
Dear Ricky,
Maybe it was the red dress
or because I was fifteen.
Your brother married my
on the same day I first
touched your cock.
Maybe you’re still a pervert.
Call me.
Dear Jeff,
I was your biggest mistake.
Dear Robert,
You are more than beer and
You are more than I could
ever put into a poem.
Dear Dennis,
I still think of you.
Dear Dennis,
I keep your photos in a box.
one, still in its frame.
"Racing Hummingbirds" by Jeanann Verlee

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Lost In a Circle of Books...

I'm on my fourth or fifth reading of "The History of Love" by Nicole Krauss.  This book is in my top five favorite books of all time, ever.  This book led me to my #1 favorite book:
"The Street of Crocodiles and Other Stories" by Bruno Schulz.  This book has no equal.  Do not die having NOT read this book.  It will change your life.  I weep all the way through it every time I read it because it is too much---too beautiful, too rich, too unique.  After reading one chapter, I realized that I looked at the world through new eyes.  (Also, knowing that Mr. Schulz was shot in the head at age 50 by a Nazi and that his magnum opus, "The Messiah" was lost just breaks my heart into a million pieces.)  But reading this book is like falling into a lake of color & words & otherness & mystery & magic.  It is like no other book on earth.  And then I read that Ms. Krauss is married to the writer, Jonathan Safran Foer, which led me to fetch my copy of:
"Tree of Codes" by Jonathan Safran Foer which is more a work of art than a simple book because he took "The Street of Crocodiles" and selectively cut out words to create a new book which is in itself a miracle and a wonder.  And then I read more books by Ms. Krauss and Mr. Foer. 
And that's what I've been up to.  And you? 


Monday, November 5, 2012

This Moment by Eavan Boland

Sunrise through spider web, October, 2007

This Moment
By Eavan Boland

A neighbourhood.
At dusk.

Things are getting ready
to happen
out of sight.

Stars and moths.
And rinds slanting around fruit.

But not yet.

One tree is black.
One window is yellow as butter.

A woman leans down to catch a child
who has run into her arms
this moment.

Stars rise.
Moths flutter.
Apples sweeten in the dark.

from "In a Time of Violence", 1994
W.W. Norton & Company, Inc., New York, NY


I shared this poem with a friend last week.  It was the first poem I'd ever read by Eavan Boland and I fell instantly in love with her poetry.  It's a great day when you discover a new poet.    This moment is all we have, so cherish it.  It's what I'm trying to do.

Love & Blessings,

"What saves a (wo)man is to take a step. Then another step. It is always the same step, but you have to take it." ~Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, Wind, Sand and Stars, 1939, translated from French by Lewis Galantière

Friday, November 2, 2012

What Every Woman Should Carry by Maura Dooley


What Every Woman Should Carry
By Maura Dooley

My mother gave me the prayer to Saint Theresa.
I added a used tube ticket, kleenex,
several Polo mints (furry), a tampon, pesetas,
a florin. Not wishing to be presumptuous,
not trusting you either, a pack of 3.
I have a pen. There is space for my guardian
angel, she has to fold her wings. Passport.
A key. Anguish, at what I said/didn’t say
when once you needed/didn’t need me. Anadin.
A credit card. His face the last time,
my impatience, my useless youth.
That empty sack, my heart. A box of matches.

from:  "Staying Alive:  Real Poems for Unreal Times" edited by Neil Astley, page 116

florin - a former British coin worth two shillings or a gold coin formerly used in Eurpoe
pesetas - monetary unit of Spain before the Euro
anadin - a brand of painkiller sold in the UK