3/30 April ’14
April 3, 2014 at 9:31am
(a collaborative poem by me and google)
young people working together
young people reject dairy products
young people interested in electronics
young people today is better than young people before
young people children and the elderly in urban poverty in Ghana
young people’s guide to the orchestra
young people’s heroes
young people having fun on the beach
young people reject urban poverty products
young people guide the heroes on the beach
young people today working in elderly
young people is better together
young people’s elderly heroes
young people’s children having dairy
young people’s orchestra guide to electronics
let’s write it on human skin
Her scars I don’t
love I worship
my gods my maps my cruel
universe draws me in close
enough to stab slow so slow
epicenter of the gods of my own
Not pink-fade on knee from
first bike hitting tree not
dime-dimple of TB not
hairless strip from oven rack burn
not missing bit of finger pad taken by edge
of glass in broken pane
Gravity well black hole dark
matter what’s the matter? god
particle time portal Big
This year I’m joining the Big Poetry Giveaway organized by Kelli Russell Agodon over at Book of Kells Poetry Giveaway 2014. What a marvelous idea she had five years ago to spread the poetry love around! I’m giving away 3 books. To enter to win, post a comment saying which book/books you’d love to receive, and at the end of National Poetry Month I’ll choose a winner for each book by some manner of random drawing.
My 3 books, beloved for different reasons, are:
A Wreath for Emmett Till, an astounding cycle of poems by Marilyn Nelson. In a royal crown of sonnets, she reflects on the life and death of Emmett Till, the difficulty of finding language for this kind of grief, and the on going nature of violence and remembrance. Because this was released as a Young Adult book, waaaaaaayyy too many poets I love don’t know the work.
Legs Tipped with Small Claws, a 2012 chapbook from Joan Larkin in which insects and jazz and brittle sharp writing combine to be a huge delight in a small book. Joan gave me an autographed copy, so I’m passing on one I bought.
Another amazing little book that few folks seem to know, a 1954 book Langston Hughes wrote for children about the nature of rhythm in the world. I've found it so invaluable that I buy used copies whenever I come across them. To you, Dear Poetry Lover, I'm willing to pass along one of these!
Again, to enter, post a comment saying which book/books you'd like to be in the running for. Easy!
2/30 April ’14
April 2, 2014 at 7:45pm
let’s build a monster trap.
you get the shovel, and I’ll
find the thinnest story you ever used
to get me to take you back,
and I will lay it over the skylight.
let’s leave a map nailed to the tree.
let’s write it on human skin.
let’s put a big juicy X next to the spot
you once told me I’d look better
without a mustache.
when we find it, squirming
within our reach, its tentacles and fur
and hands with too many fingers reaching up
through the vapor,
it’s my problem, now.
My life as theoretical math or:
on the un-inevitability of linear time
There is a kind of grown-up
I will never be. I know I’m not
alone in this but still – my god,
I’m 51 and
what the fuck? I still
avoid bills I have the money
to pay I neither answer my
phone nor check my voice
mail – I don’t want to know who
needs what I haven’t
attention to give. Holy hell,
self-centered and self-righteous
barely mellowed as I aged and I
can make a mess and walk away,
near to believing it was not me.
Maybe age does not accumulate for
my subspecies maybe time can not-be
linear maybe 51 means I am 1
and 5 and 15 all at the same time, next
year 2 and 5 and 25, every ten years I
am zero every 11 years at least by god I am
Caelan Tree, current student in my beloved MFA in Poetry and Poetry in Translation program at Drew, has taken up the NaPoWriMo challenge and is blogging at: tethered here, breathakingly awkward and alive
White opinions always matter
women’s rarely do.
So she dons a suit of I Am Serious
to discover how white she’s willing to lie
White lives define the Civilized
Black, the dark and wild
White hangs Black art to the sound of Black music
oh Black is still something White loves to buy
White speaks White English grammatically
an accent a sign of the barbarous
White is proud to only know White to choke
on the tongues grandparents forced parents to swallow
White families, the realm of the norm, of bliss
the choice to live queer, abomination
Now measure the cost of the fight to be civil
Gasp at the price of domestication
the measure of White the measure of right the measure of kith
and kin the measure of White the measure of light to see
who is out and who in the measure of White the measure of
might the measure of power that does us all in
2 reasons I am, today, once again, furious about White:
The Apartheid of Children’s Literature
Last year, only 93 of the 3,200 children’s books published were about Black people. That works out to less than three-percent
Over at The Book of Kells, Kelli Russell Agodon has posted 30 great writing prompts to help all meet the NaPoWriMo challenge. Find them here – they’re awesome!
Thousands of poets, that’s who! Find out more at NaPoWriMo 2014
Waaayy too long away from my own blog doing other business. Now its April and BACK TO WRITING I MUST GO. One never knows where poem-a-day will take one, but this one has been thinking constantly about white privilege, whiteliness, and the sixth extinction, so one suspects a lot of poems exploring whiteliness will be coming out.
Destruction Lies in White DNA
we whites refuse to assess disaster
acquired slaves so the world we’d master
‘til cost was then reappraised—oil
less coins than breeding black flesh, and faster.
the ways that we disconnect from actions,
industrial revolution hiding
the dead and dying. Oh we profit masters!
the ways that we disengage from actions
that we take every day. The world knows,
though—that we are their disengaged assassins