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Archive for December, 2008

(from a law book)

Amelia was just fourteen and out of the orphan asylum; at her
first job–in the bindery, and yes sir, yes ma’am, oh, so
anxious to please.
She stood at the table, her blond hair hanging about her
shoulders, “knocking up” for Mary and Sadie, the stichers
(“knocking up” is counting books and stacking them in piles to
be taken away).

-Charles Reznikoff

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Endnote

The great poems of
our elders in many
tongues we struggled

to comprehend who
are now content with
mystery simple

and profound you
in the night your
breath your body

(continue)

-Hayden Carruth

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Mark Rothko
[ 01 Dec ]
London’s Tate Modern is currently
holding an exhibition of Mark
Rothko’s later works through to 1st
February 2009. The collection
plunges the viewer into his deep
“colorfields” – chromatic spaces for
meditation.

-Nina Alvarez

This is a found poem, stumbled upon on the front page of Artprice.com. If you have any found poems, send them in! This is found poem week.

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Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage [There is a pleasure in the pathless woods]

There is a pleasure in the pathless woods,
There is a rapture on the lonely shore,
There is society where none intrudes,
By the deep Sea, and music in its roar:
I love not Man the less, but Nature more,
From these our interviews, in which I steal
From all I may be, or have been before,
To mingle with the Universe, and feel
What I can ne’er express, yet cannot all conceal.

Roll on, thou deep and dark blue Ocean–roll!
Ten thousand fleets sweep over thee in vain;
Man marks the earth with ruin–his control
Stops with the shore;–upon the watery plain
The wrecks are all thy deed, nor doth remain
A shadow of man’s ravage, save his own,
When for a moment, like a drop of rain,
He sinks into thy depths with bubbling groan,
Without a grave, unknelled, uncoffined, and unknown.

His steps are not upon thy paths,–thy fields
Are not a spoil for him,–thou dost arise
And shake him from thee; the vile strength he wields
For earth’s destruction thou dost all despise,
Spurning him from thy bosom to the skies,
And send’st him, shivering in thy playful spray
And howling, to his gods, where haply lies
His petty hope in some near port or bay,
And dashest him again to earth: —there let him lay.

-George Gordon Byron

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Hope

Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul,
And sings the tune–without the words,
And never stops at all,

And sweetest in the gale is heard;
And sore must be the storm
That could abash the little bird
That kept so many warm.

I’ve heard it in the chillest land,
And on the strangest sea;
Yet, never, in extremity,
It asked a crumb of me.

-Emily Dickinson

This poem uses slant rhyme.  Can you pick it out?

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Prometheus: Behind the Music

Prometheus loved the afternoon
and took his drink with goat meat then.
And shook the rawness of his hands
on his big thighs and wiped them clean.

The giant man held conference
with intangible or tiny things.
Once a woman stayed the night,
He scared her with his offerings.

Prometheus watched television,
two channels from a long dead wire.
One of heaven, one of hell
Both claimed to fear his fire.

What say you, said the billy goat,
Rumor, said the ancient man
Of my liver’s destiny
has gotten out of hand
.

Foolishness or fascism
imagines horrors blindly
.
But he also said beneath his breath,
You’d think they’d try to find me.

He supped at evening languidly,
The raw meat of sheep and elk.
He drank fermented honey
And slept on arid silk.

His hands smelled of animals,
His land smelled of blood,
And though he was immortal,
He was often sick and cold.

At night he hung his hut
With every kind of fur
Prometheus had seen no gods
Since he invented fire.

He never saw an eagle,
His liver never quivered,
No horror ever chained him by
A rock or cliff or river.

He simply went away,
From fame and flames and heat
to sup at quiet mountains
a cold and bloody meat.

-Nina Alvarez

This poem uses slant rhyme.  Can you find it?

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