Friday, May 29, 2009

Thought and Memory

and a total first draft of something.....

Thought and Memory

Their wings beat
beside my ears, ruffling
my hair but never tangling it.

Knowledge comes
unlooked for - I knew you
before you arrived, saw your soul
in silence as we lay on the bare floor.

Cold painted walls
disco ball above, tiny mirrors
tiny stars dancing on the wood floor
on your wide-open eyes, your dark-lashed
glowing eyes, your brown eyes, your sad eyes.

I remember your name
from somewhere I've never been.
I remember the smell of your hair,
Raven-dark and shining, smoky and shining
and surrounding me suddenly. I don't remember
you moving, beside me, above me, your hair like birds
delicate and quick, hollow bones, breakable, but still


defying gravity.

I feel like a real grad student

I am registered for classes now! Yeehaw!

Intro to Graduate Study
Poetry Workshop
Writer in the Community

plus a 1 hour Teaching Colloquium, and my freshman comp teaching assignment.

Super cool!

Thursday, May 28, 2009



There are paths in the brain
we tread every day: time, space,
self, but there are ways to step
off the well-worn track. Wilderness
awaits, a terrifying mystery,
a disconnection, a connection.

God is present in the space
between your reality and mine.

Friday, May 22, 2009

The universe is made of stories, not of atoms

That's a quote by Muriel Rukeyser. I've run across it before, and liked the lines, but read it again recently and it's stuck in my head. I enjoy her poems quite a bit.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Just a couplet

You are the smell of lighter fluid and charcoal and charring beef.
You are nostalgia, not desire: I have been a vegetarian for ten years.

I have not posted anything in weeks.... I had a good visit to PA, but then things fell through with the apartment I thought I had, and I was very annoyed about that. It feels like one has to be heterosexual and without pets in order to find a roommate and apartment in that damn town. I think I've found another roommate, but we're still hunting for a pet-friendly place. So, yeah, it's an ongoing process....

I've not done much writing recently. I'm trying. I keep coming up with ideas when I'm out running, or walking, or driving, or in some other way unable to write them down, and then failing to remember them or lacking the motivation to sit down and write them when I am able to do so. I've been reading a bit - mostly fiction but some poetry. Thinking about brain chemistry, concepts of self and identity, society and individuality, ingroups and outgroups. Typical stuff ;)

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Goodbye, Poetry Forum! I will remember you fondly!

So I read on Monday, probably for the last time at the Poetry Forum, or at least the last time as a regular. I promised to come back and visit, but a Monday night event is not the easiest thing. It was a really fun night; Nathan's reading was wonderful, and everything seemed to go very well. I had probably one glass of wine too many, but hey, it was a special occasion.

I'm going to PA on Friday, to find an apartment and hang out. Supposed to bring poems to show one of my future fellow students. Nervous about everything having to do with grad school, but excited. I now have a nice bookstore gift certificate to spend and need to make a list of stuff I want to buy. Yay books! And yay roadtrips! And yay poetry! (and to balance that out - boo to annoying coworkers, rainy days, and people leaving without saying goodbye!)

Friday, May 1, 2009

What I Fear

One of the last PAD prompts was to write a sestina, so I did. The themes come from two places - one a very old prompt I took from Stacey, which is just to take all your fears or anxieties and write them into a poem - and one taking off on the theme of a poem I read Monday night.

What I Fear

These are the things I fear:
both success and failure, love
and never finding love, being
trapped in a house that’s burning,
cars stopped on a bridge,
growing old or dying young.

I no longer feel young
in the winter, and I fear
the ice on each bridge,
want only warmth and love,
your face above a book, fireplace burning
beside our two chairs, the simple act of being

with you. Each human being
can be happy but only the young
see it as a right. This ends with the burning
of a hand on a stove, the lessons to fear
what you do not know, that love
sometimes punishes, that not all bridges

can or should be crossed. A bridge
just outside of town where we went to be
alone, threw our bras in the creek and made love
in the car for the first time. We were young
enough to be reckless, old enough to fear
judgment. My mother told us we would burn

in hell, her knuckles white, her arms a burning
cross over her chest. She can not bridge
the gap between God and love. Her fear
is for my soul, her guilt for not being
able to avert this crisis when I was young.
There are so many kinds of love

and so many feelings that are not love:
to be trapped, to be forced, to burn
inside with shame. When I was young
I learned to fear escalators and bridges
and strange men and drugs. I learned to be
good is to be safe, and this is what I truly fear:

that I will let fear keep me from love,
that nothing will be enough to burn
away the bridges sunk deep when I was young.