Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Jan. 10: Naomi Shihab Nye: Burning the Old Year/Kindness, Oppen,

One kind word can warm three winter months...
just like Naomi Shihab Nye's poems...



Kindness does not come quickly. Emptying out to make room, understanding death, mortality, putting yourself in another's shoes, understanding "the simple breath" that kept someone else alive. There is no equivocation: kindness is the deepest thing inside next to sorrow.

"you must speak to sorrow till your voice catches the thread of all sorrows and you see the size of the cloth." --
She promises the magic of kindness, like a shadow or a friend.

Her other poem, Burning the Old Year is filled with lively languable, sizzle, swirling, crackle,

think celebration of absence, leaving a space... and that crackle after the blazing dies -- a possibility that is still alive.

Five poems about Poetry: Oppen -- The Gesture:

wonderful suspensions -- demanding pauses at each line --
The question is -- with a colon; with an enjambement and stanza break, ambling through two more couplets to end in a question. The question is -- has two questions attached:
apple/filth. intention-- to grasp or sell; The final time, the question is mysterious -- just what is "THAT" gesture mistaken for a style...

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