Monday, July 16, 2012

Poems for July 23

Poems for July 23

Slur by Jacek Gutorow
To The Field Of Scotch Broom That Will Be Buried By The New Wing Of The Mall 
by Lucia Perillo
Brendel Playing Schubert by Lisel Mueller
Fevers of a Minor Fire by Sandra Longhorn
New England Weather by Archibald MacLeish
Not the End of the World by Paul Hostovsky

Gutorow captures the land of not-quite/almost/inbetween. Applying the idea of boundaries to a musical slur, that softening of an accent, what links one note to the next, the poem explores the impermanence of time, supported by an elasticity in the 13 uneven lines.

Kathy shared a quotation about Lucia Perillo -- "hopefulness, not luck, fought for tooth and claw" -- hope is not that thing with feathers, but something gritty to face face manmade devastation... "helicopters chewing the linings of clouds above clear-cuts". How do we live our lives? Shrug our shoulders, rest in our habits? And even how are we "defibrillated" and to what end? Marvellously strong language that challenges...

Mueller challenges our instant reaction to applaud after keeping inside our emotions for hours... as if we cannot stay "where the enchanted live" -- without talking about
our guardian selves" there is yet this idea that we would be better off in a state
of receptive gratitude, rather than the absurd noise that jerks us away from the magic of a live performance.

Sandra Longhorn's poem has an eerie primal quality about this relationship between "Madame" and the subservient, offset by what seems to be a humorous tongue-in-cheekness -- the calloused tongue, lumbering; a little vampirish in the "neck ravaged" (based on your favored advice) and "pilfered blood" and red meat; What is this feral oath-- waiting to erupt as if inspired to speak by the spirit at a Quaker meeting? or truly UNholy?
What needs saying -- and who is in charge of ourselves -- some wildness? some consciousness that chooses the diabolic? In reading the author's blog, the inspiration draws from Lucy Brock-Broido and Emily Dickinson... and when spoken outloud, what strikes the ear are images which stand out in a bath of sound -- perhaps indeed, a very hot day, the return of inspiration, and a lonely writer,
addressing her muse.

A welcome relief then, to slip into the comfortable New England vernacular,
and talk about "summer weather..." where they'll be thunder for sure... although,
of course, the link to Sumner Boyden, buried in the New Hampshire cemetery, which brings the subject around to death, our time and place for it.

We ran out of time to discuss "Not the end of the World" -- for next week!

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