July 11, 2008

the glory goes to those who do not seek it

Michael Helsem, My Compassion and my Contempt Have It Out, 1985

As Planned
-- by Frank O'Hara

After the first glass of vodka
you can accept just about anything
of life even your own mysteriousness
you think it is nice that a box
of matches is purple and brown and is called
La Petite and comes from Sweden
for they are words that you know and that
is all you know words not their feelings
or what they mean and you write because
you know them not because you understand them
because you don't you are stupid and lazy
and will never be great but you do
what you know because what else is there?

-- by Mary Campbell

Coffee: the tightening at the heart,
The wreath of ice, like thorns
Arranged there to give pleasure,
The interpenetration of the nerves
And mind, until thought
Bites at your breast -- keen lover
Or gourmand to a sentient peach.

A little later in life, not much,
Cold beer ungirdles that tight
Garland, turns the nerves to rivers,
Gives them sense of their own
Latent, riotous joyfulness, as if
They were in bed in fact, always in beds,
And by them willows loosing their long hair.

And oh, the cigarette: beyond
These sexual illusions, the pure bliss
Of smoke loved for its own sake
The moment at which the body of man,
Alone among the animals,
Finds itself satified by nothing,
Or by a desire crafted to fulfill
A source of satisfaction.

Note to the House Sitter
-- by Debora Palmer

I forgot to tell you
the fire extinguisher is propped
by the piano. In case of fire,
grab the Cairo lamp and the dog.
If you rub her throat, she'll lean
against you and moan. Night clunks
in the kitchen are the cats
or the icemaker. Whispering
in the back office is voicemail, yelling
is from the neighbors two houses
north. The chandelier blinks;
changing bulbs doesn't change
anything. And the guy next door
who chirps at his snapdragons
and flaps at passing pedestrians,
he’s harmless. Really.


Blogger Marc van der Holst said...

you're too kind. keep it up, it means a world to me. thx, mrc

9:59 AM  

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