Tag Archives: Oulipo

Sonja Says

Sonja Says


You need an ability to call things by their real names:

discipline, destroying professors, ninety glossy ibises,

a barred owl (saw one in the graveyard, running at dusk).


Masking graver questions, blazing distress from younger years,

I don’t have a present to offer in return. Distance seemed smaller,

time still an issue; thought is found filling–


seriously, not so still.                          I tried

to photograph trees as if they were people,


without animus. Thoughtfully, deliberately, you

continued straight down the road.

I’m right here, right now.

It’s been too long already,


working at habit.

Who’s with me? Hot bath.

He is very gentle –


A journeyman flower – since no one

senses us, no one

saves us, no one

even cares. We can own

a raw universe. I have great strength;

I can come


to help you in your rain, in the bitter

soil, sharing heat. We can go looking

for answers in the blaze,


thinking which fist kills (blood splash)

our fascination with the unknown embraces.


Create more

joie de vivre. Still,


we live in a culture of madness—

the continuum of experience

in which events pass from the future, to the present,


to the past:

a quick fix,

a hard fraud.


It’s been like an endless winter,

and it’s raining.



Source: The Oulipost poems of Sonja, as sourced from http://cloudberrykisses.wordpress.com/.  For the most part, I sourced phrases in reverse order from her latest to her earliest, but I don’t think it’s 100% true to that order because I was looking at Sonja’s poems 2-3 at a time, and if this month’s lessons taught us anything, it’s that constraints are meant to be bent. All of Sonja’s poems from the month of Ouliposting are represented, usually as a phrase and not just a single word. She made it easy to patchwork her work, because her voice is strong and consistent, even when constrained/guided by found poetry prompts.



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Filed under Oulipost, Poetry