Monthly Archives: December 2013

The Funeral

The Funeral

 

Nothing should be faced alone, especially grief,

that inevitable and immediate force. The guilt

following. The selfishness. I hate wearing a suit,

the empty words of strangers. “So-and-so

meant so much to me,” they lie, affably.

 

The urge to scream, muffled in the deluge

of cold cuts, cold meat delivered in drowning

bounties to the front door, where strangers ring the bell.

 

Family comes in the back way, unannounced,

welcomed invasions. They know where things are,

and put on a fresh pot of coffee,

knowing it will be needed.

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Her Mirror, Reflecting Winter Sands (Fibonacci Found Language poem)

Her Mirror, Reflecting Winter Sands

 

Pillows piled on the bed, covered in ruffles, coordinating.

I ask this: had our lives allowed, we would have become

how young?

 

Look. Her open Irish face, her guileless blue eyes, her

friends. One to cancer, one to a heart attack that came without warning,

walking down to the little inlet beach on the bay,

 

snow mostly melted.     More due tonight and tomorrow.

She brushes tangles out of her hair. It hangs down, straight, and

where is she?

 

Airy white cosmos, and black-eyed Susans.

Upstairs to bed as soon as she finishes her plate.

 

Source Text: The Ice Margin, by Marcia Woodruff Dalton. Techniques include erasure, punctuation changes and reversed pronouns in the final line.

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Bloodletting (Fibonacci Found Language poem)

Bloodletting

 

Resistant to summation.

Blood on the kitchen floor,

the importance of initial intentions.

 

Fact: for a whole month I did this twice a week,

unheralded, unmourned, well, you get the drift.

 

Inherent innocence is only slightly winded.

Hold on for even one second more.

Extend it all, as if size is reduced,

 

missing reason,

and a way beyond it.

 

Source Text: House of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewski. Fibonacci poem using erasure and punctuation changes, as well as line-break alterations. Raw lines follow:

Resistant to summation.

Blood on the kitchen floor.

Undervalues the importance of Navidson’s initial intentions.

Fact, for a whole month I did this twice a week.

Unheralded, passings unmourned, well, you get the drift.

Skourja’s analysis, especially concerning the inherent innocence of

the engineer is only slightly winded

hold onto for even one second more, to extend it all, if we can, as if

camera, size is reduced

than

17 pages missing

Reason for my incarceration and a way beyond it. If

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Fibonacci Poems

The Found Poetry Review offered an intriguing prompt today: using a combination of the Fibonacci sequence and the Golden Ratio to pull text from books for raw material for Found Language Poems. Here’s the relevant site: http://www.foundpoetryreview.com/blog/poetry-prompt-the-golden-ratio/

The rules were as follows:

Follow these steps to create your poem:

  1. Select a book from your shelf.
  2. Use the Fibonacci sequence to identify the page numbers to which you will refer: 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34, 55, 89, 144, 233, 377…
  3. Turn to the first page and count the number of lines. Divide the total number of lines by the golden ratio (1.61803398875) and round to the nearest whole number.
  4. The text in the resulting line will be the first line of your poem. So if your page is 25 lines long, you will use line number 15.
  5. Turn to the next number in the sequence (page 2) and repeat the same process outlined above.

Guidelines:

  • Once you have recorded all the lines of the poem, it is acceptable to revise by removing words, fixing tenses, and changing punctuation.
  • Lines should stay in original order, but it is OK to change line breaks by combining them.
  • You may choose not to begin with page 1 of your source text.

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Before the First Word, the Universe Sang

Before the First Word, the Universe Sang

 

Just the landscape of numberless

boundaries and human-carved rocks—

 

striking, suggestive as steel-tempered sentences. Absurdities

ready-to-burst, tethered like the stars by Nature’s own chains,

 

the forge of convention. Transparent and well-nigh invisible,

as if loose over this world and the next, yet enclosed by bellglass.

 

Its bounds live, move, and brandish verbal spears

made of the heaviest, most opaque stuff in the universe—

 

denser than hammered steel, yet indefinite. What they shall be:

nothing, hope, all possibilities, longing of heaven and eternities.

 

Weighed, measured, branded and bounded by order,

like bricks. Machinery. Books lack faith in the Scriptures of Nature.

 

The joint work of evil and good must dwell in contact with beauty,

the vulgar heresy, familiarity with contempt. Intervals to be measured

 

instead of inhaling every moment in order

to act, to say anything with the purest words of deceit.

 

Reason was born and bred and dwells in the barren rock,

the bleak winds, the solitude of seas—

 

they have language, but declare nothing.

 

Erasure poem. Source Text:  January 10th, 1873 letter to J. B. McChesney http://www.sierraclub.org/john_muir_exhibit/life/life_and_letters/chapter_10.aspx

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The Primeval Forest Remembers

The Primeval Forest Remembers

 

Perhaps it is natural, a legend afloat in the valley of trees–

a tale of fallen timber requires no origin, no doubt. Desire to gratify

 

curiosity, to see associations with secluded, umbrageous remnants.

Examination reveals there never had been a floor or windows,

 

never roofed for man. All that remains: the valley, the myth-making

faculty, glorified as “Lost Cabin” and such sighs. But no mystery.

 

Not a vestige of the original remains now in the cold season,

wrapped in frosty shadows. The sun shines obliquely, generates

 

very little grateful warmth to follow the absence,

determining the species.

 

 

Remix poem. Source Text: http://www.sierraclub.org/john_muir_exhibit/life/life_and_letters/chapter_10.aspx

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Lamenting Antigone

Lamenting Anigone

 

Lamenting Antigone

 

So I couldn’t let the truth stay buried,
unhallowed, neglected. We share the same blood,
but you would condemn me,
stone me, bury me like an inconvenient truth
must be contained. My brother succeeded,

but hear me from my unmarked tomb–
remember me, my belt
defiant in gold and green, my colors

gay and unwavering
before the jury of my peers,
unqualified but judging all the same.
Let them cast their lots. I know the outcome.

I always knew

who would win, and why.
You admitted that the dearest profit could be too dear,
so I remember
when you called me dear.

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December 12, 2013 · 3:48 am