Ekphrastic poetry

For those of us working in all kinds of genres: Moonrise, Aurora, Nebraska by Twyla Hansen No Ansel Adams but the snapshots we captured through the open car window on our eight megapixel cell phones on the side of the road off an exit ramp as truck taillights streaked eastbound opposite the earth’s rotation in…

Allow the self to be distracted — (Ars Poetica XVI)

—  wasting time is the most personal, most private, most intimate form of conversation with oneself, as well as with another. Madness, Rack, and Honey: Collected Lectures by Mary Ruefle *   Susan Hiller: Dream Mapping (1973/74)  Dream Mapping, 1973 was an art event provocatively poised between an experiment (social or scientific) and a performance without an…

Sunday Poem on a Tuesday

Oasis Beth Bachmann We want what God wants: to be pure. Take the water. We’ll pay for it in glass. Poseidon, now there’s a god, a real king of water. We want what a god wants: to own it, all. Water baron, barren woman, what do you know of the sea? The sea never ceases…

Sunday Poem

Things to Think by Robert Bly Think in ways you’ve never thought before. If the phone rings, think of it as carrying a message Larger than anything you’ve ever heard, Vaster than a hundred lines of Yeats. Think that someone may bring a bear to your door, Maybe wounded and deranged; or think that a…

Grace

Lucky All this time, the life you were supposed to live has been rising around you like the walls of a house designed with warm harmonious lines.   As if you had actually planned it that way.   As if you had stacked up bricks at random, and built by mistake a lucky star. “Lucky”…

Notes on Melancholy, part 4

In my first note on melancholy I quoted the following question raised by Jacky Bowring, she asked: How can things that are sorrowful be beautiful? Louise Glück’s First Snow is not a theoretical answer, but a wonderful demonstration of something deeply sorrowful becoming almost unbearably beautiful – First Snow  by Louise Glück  Like a child, the earth’s going to…

This fear we call stress

Following the Road by Larry Smith from A River Remains. © Word Tech Editions, 2006.   I have left my wife at the airport, flying out to help our daughter whose baby will not eat. And I am driving on to Kent to hear some poets read tonight.   I don’t know what to do with…

Ars Poetica XIII

The space between two languages is a space like no other. — Anne Carson . Writing anything at all is a work of translation exactly comparable to that of transmuting a text from one language into another. — Paul Valéry .  

Ars Poetica XII: Art is a question

In my last post I offered a few points from Siri Hustvedt’s truly interesting essay on Louise Bourgeois. One of the things I have been thinking about since, is Hustvedt’s assertion that: A work of art is always part person, that is: a work of art is part-thing-part-person, it is this aliveness – according to…

Short Talk On Housing

I have entered a new year of bookish life together with an old friend of mine, Anne Carson, or her texts, to be more precise. Close reading, slowly finding my way through her Short Talks. Here is how today started: Short Talk On Housing Here is one thing you can do if you have no…

. For among these winters there is one so endlessly winter that only by wintering through it will your heart survive. . ― Rainer Maria Rilke, Sonnets to Orpheus NOVEMBER TWO BLUE (2013), from Reading November Series  © Mary Ellen Bartley .  

Winter Grace

If you have seen the snow (…) slowly falling into the brook to be swallowed by water, then you have seen beauty Peter Brook: Misty Morning, 1975 .. If you have seen the snow under the lamppost piled up like a white beaver hat on the picnic table or somewhere slowly falling into the brook to…