Saturday, August 20, 2011

Poetry and Pleasure

covers of 2 homemade Japanese bound notebooks.
poem is from the kirsten flagstad one, NB 26, 1978

  Is poetry pleasure

Or pain.
Is life anything at all.
Yes, it's arguments
And catching the ball
And then winning.
The heart beats
The dog runs
How the adverbs cluster
Around the nouns
In the absence of verbs.
A verb is to be
Or not to be
If I may repeat
The question
What do you do after the soap opera
Is over.
These are rarefied airs
They wont get you nowhere
Except another addiction.
How to make prayer not work.
How to not do anything at all.
How to trust and yet be separate —
The beginner's fall.
The peach trees are blooming
The cherries Just popped out
The bees are amazing
The smell stuns the nose.
Is poetry anything at all
Except a nosegay for improper poets.
Poets who do things under the table
While they talk of God.
Or preachers who clap their hands
And besmirch the patio
Calling on their dreams
To be cone all night.
When I say prayer I mean
Calling on the rivers to be mountains
To be beams
To hang over your head
And stay there.
I mean calling on your dreams
To mean something
Which they wont except
Keeping afloat in a boat
While your dream drives through.
And there is tomorrow
And today is a windy day.
March comes in staring like a bull at September.
Advice has lost her consent.
Troubles send their messages to God
He answers I clapped my hands
Send up a toy.
They send up
He dies
They lift their skirts
They oogle and dance
And call it the Oogle Dance.
Night people
Hangin out
Make it day.
Day people
Workin out
Make it night.
And so the fight begins
Between night and day
Poetry and song
Which is here to stay?
Green tea.
You don’t know the swamp unless you
Fall in it.
No matter how many years
Youve microscoped it
And teethed on It.
You may make it to Paradise
In a boat
But dont tell me what
Youve got caught in your throat.
 Your past history
 All those sexual flings
 Youve covered up
 Those honest little secrecies
 You hide in your purse.
But to stay there
Is the time of day
A day in which it stretches on
Long enough to stay.
The light like some bold attack
Launches up in the sky overhead
And stays there revealing all
And to all alike.
The lopsided hill
Becomes a bulging spine
A lake turned to bone
To live on
A sense of history
Running back and forth
And getting trapped
Getting so high
You fell on your back.
You didnt know poetry could
Go so far to please
Or what it's all about
Would be such a shout
A door slammed in your face
A box full of jeans
A lifetime supply
Of raffle coupons
A chance to win you won!
You crazy son of a gun.
A quiet way to come up
And give someone a boost
Exacting nothing more than what is given.
The creative act
A Venus Fly Trap
All hinged open
Ready for the food that feeds it
A Passion Flower
I have never seen
Friendship in unison
Sings a tune —
After-work talk to
Rounds of beer.
Im outside the harmonies
I hear —
A slap on the back when
The back Isnt there.
The creative set is a rack to hook your dreams on
That disappear and arent part
Of somebody
But palpable fruit setting.
On the last leg
Of the day
On the last limb
Of the tree
Or anywhere
For that matter
Where there’s a you and a me.

larry goodell / placitas, new mexico / 5th of April 1978

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