April 24, 2009

all thoughts are prey to some beast

Pep Suari, A Patchy Woman, 2005

East Bronx
-- by David Ignatow (1914-1997)

In the street two children sharpen
knives against the curb.
Parents leaning out the window
above gaze and think and smoke
and duck back into the house
to sit on the toilet seat
with locked door to read
of the happiness of two tortoises
on an island in the Pacific --
always alone and always
the sun shining.

Famous Last Words
-- by Antonia Clark

The dying make no bones about it. It’s life
they want to talk about—business as usual:
news and weather, sports, the sound of rain
striking the windowpane, the most recent hole in one,
stock prices, interest rates, errands to run.

The dying talk of elephants, veal pies, rising fog,
tiresome wallpaper, shore birds at low tide. Chekhov
spoke fondly of champagne, Bogart of Scotch,
Dylan Thomas totted up his whiskeys, satisfied.
They often speak of the dark or ask for the light
to be left on or off. They may cry out,
“I’m still alive!” or more soberly reflect
on things they should have done or said,
bills still unpaid, books left unread.

My father, a joker even at the end,
said, “Don’t call me, I’ll call you.” It’s kept
the thought of him alive, it’s true. Hope springs
eternal, just like fear, each time the phone rings.

Getting It Right
-- by Jack Gilbert

Lying in front of the house all
afternoon, trying to write a poem.
Falling asleep.
Waking up under the stars.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm digging the Bill Callahan, too.

(Can't believe I said "digging".)

Sherwood Anderson

12:36 PM  

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