Posts tagged ‘2004’

Friday, 1 April 2022

April Fool’s Day by Peter Halstead

The vernal equinox again.
Not so vernal, this time,
As eternal. Not so equal, either,
As just another wintry sequel.
The divided sky, cut in half by sun and ice,
Riffles through the branches twice,
As the rime of history dies
And the summer slowly multiplies:
Woolly clouds resemble glaciers,
Undermined by warmer natures—
Time is cold and close today,
A solar cloisonné.

We are the hours we replace,
Not clock innards, but their face,
And the planet’s penduluming trips
Are more about its balanced drips:
The gist of the galactic chase
Leaps in us through empty space:
Not from any godly knack,
But from creation’s partial lack—
Not from the worlds growing here,
But because they disappear,
As far as I can see,
Springs the night’s equality.

Tippet Alley
April 1st, 1995

Rue de Varenne
September 19th, 2004; May 24th, 2005

From: https://www.brinkerhoffpoetry.org/poems/april-fools-day

Date: 1995, 2004, 2005

By: Peter Halstead (19??- )

Tuesday, 1 March 2022

The Black Spot by Hedd Wynn (Ellis Humphrey Evans)

We have no right to the stars,
Nor the homesick moon,
Nor the clouds edged with gold
In the centre of the long blueness.

We have no right to anything
But the old and withered earth
That is all in chaos
At the centre of God’s glory.

From: https://www.firstworldwar.com/poetsandprose/wyn.htm

Date: 1917 (original in Welsh); 2004 (translation in English)

By: Hedd Wynn (Ellis Humphrey Evans) (1887-1917)

Translated by: Jim Finnis (19??- )

Friday, 4 February 2022

Merman by Marie Lecrivain

We spawn shadows
fooling ourselves into thinking absinthe-enhanced relations
are labors of love.

Comfort this night is nothing more than a yen for body heat.
You’ll get more honesty
and a sense of absolution from the fisherman’s hook,
than you can from me.

Rise from the pillow,
& swim from my bedside, your Piscean nature reasserting itself.
Scales bound twice for
penance and abjuration of mercy-
the tides are much easier to navigate
when the mind is not burdened with memories
of once being human…or nearly so.

From: https://www.tryst3.com/issue10/lecrevain.html

Date: 2004

By: Marie Lecrivain (19??- )

Sunday, 26 December 2021

Just Doing My Job by Clare Bevan

I’m one of Herod’s Henchmen.
We don’t have much to say,
We just charge through the audience
In a Henchman sort of way.

We all wear woolly helmets
To hide our hair and ears,
And Wellingtons sprayed silver
To match our tinfoil spears.

Our swords are made of cardboard
So blood will not be spilled
If we trip and stab a parent
When the hall’s completely filled.

We don’t look very scary,
We’re mostly small and shy,
And some of us wear glasses,
But we give the thing a try.

We whisper Henchman noises
While Herod hunts for strangers,
And then we all charge out again
Like nervous Power Rangers.

Yet when the play is over
And Miss is out of breath
We’ll charge like Henchmen through the hall
And scare our mums to death.

From: https://www.panmacmillan.com/blogs/literary/our-favourite-christmas-poems

Date: 2004

By: Clare Bevan (19??- )

Sunday, 5 December 2021

Scheherazade by Richard Siken

Tell me about the dream where we pull the bodies out of the lake
and dress them in warm clothes again.
How it was late, and no one could sleep, the horses running
until they forget that they are horses.
It’s not like a tree where the roots have to end somewhere,
it’s more like a song on a policeman’s radio,
how we rolled up the carpet so we could dance, and the days
were bright red, and every time we kissed there was another apple
to slice into pieces.
Look at the light through the windowpane. That means it’s noon, that means
we’re inconsolable.
Tell me how all this, and love too, will ruin us.
These, our bodies, possessed by light.
Tell me we’ll never get used to it.

From: http://youngerpoets.yupnet.org/2008/04/22/scheherazade-crush-by-richard-siken/

Date: 2004

By: Richard Siken (1967- )

Friday, 13 August 2021

Some People Don’t Say Much by Han Dong

some people don’t say much
they are neither mute nor introverted
saying only what’s necessary
speaking only when courtesy demands it
floating on the surface of speech
this is how they are all their lives
summed up in a few phrases
some people live like epitaphs
long years reduced to a sentence or two
soberly like headstones they stand there
facing us.

From: https://www.poetryinternational.org/pi/poem/8388/auto/0/0/Han-Dong/Some-People-Dont-Say-Much/en/tile

Date: 2004 (original in Chinese); 2006 (translation in English)

By: Han Dong (1961- )

Translated by: Simon Patton (19??- )

Monday, 5 July 2021

Monuments by Myra Weisberg Sklarew

Today the moon sees fit to come between a parched earth
and sun, hurrying the premature darkness. A rooster in the yard
cuts off its crowing, fooled into momentary sleep.
And soon the Perseid showers, broken bits
of the ancient universe, will pass through the skin of our
atmosphere. Time and space are alive over our city.

Final eclipse of the sun, last of this millennium, our city’s
brightness broken off. We have known other dark hours:
Here, coffin that slowly passes, I give you my sprig
of lilac
—Lincoln’s death, winding procession toward sleep.
We have known slave coffles and holding pens in yards
not half a mile from our Capitol, wooden palings sunk in earth

to guarantee none would escape. In this freest city. Oh if earth
could talk. Earth does talk in the neatly framed yards
where death thinks to lay us down to rest. Asleep,
the marker stones. But not the voices, jagged bits
of memory, shards of poems. Sterling Brown. Our
human possessions and all they’ve left us. This whole city

sings their songs. Say their names. In this city
they are our monuments: Frederick Douglass, our
Rayford Logan, Alain Locke, Franklin Frazier, Georgia
Douglas Johnson, Paul Laurence Dunbar, May Miller: Not sleep
but garlands left to us. Montague Cobb, William Hastie. Yards
of names. And here, the place where we unearth

an immigrant father of seven. He leans down—no earthly
reason for his choice—to pick up his nearest child. A yard-long
rack of brooms behind him, a bin of apples. Not the sleep
of cold, but autumn in Washington. 1913 or a bit
later. He stands awkwardly on 4 1/2 Street, S. W. as our
street photographer, who’s just come by with his city

chatter, ducks beneath a dark cloth. Monuments of the city
behind him, he leans over his black box camera in time to capture
that moment when the child will play her bit
part, pushing away from her father like a boat from shore. In the sleep
of winter, years later, she will become my mother. What yardstick
by which to measure importance? To measure earthly

agency? Each of us has monuments in the bone case of memory. Earth-
bound, I take my sac of marble and carry it down lonely city streets where our
generals on horseback and a tall bearded man keep watch over all their citizens.

From: https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/52950/monuments-56d231d418a80

Date: 2004

By: Myra Weisberg Sklarew (1934- )

Monday, 28 June 2021

Kind of Blue by Angie Estes

Because most stars were born more than six billion
years ago, the average color of the universe has changed
since that bluer period when there were more young stars.
—The Cosmic Spectrum and the Color of the Universe

So the universe is not blue
after all, not even green

but beige because the stars are
older than we thought. But is it

sad, even sadder than
we knew? Describe the sound

of doves — is it coo, coo
coo or who who who? The French

would say it’s rue rue rue
and in Italy it would be summer,

morning, already brocade,
Cecilia Bartoli gargling. And the throats

of doves, are they beautiful
or true in their blue and pink

embroidery? Young stars burn
hot and blue but those near death

are red. Did your father believe
in God?
and the deer leaped

so high above the road I believed
it had been hit by a car. Dear falling

note, intention, dear
no more, dear rain,

give it up. What remains and need
not be mentioned we’ll call

what have you, musica ficta: not
what’s written down but what’s

been played. What if
you paused for a minuet

instead of a minute? The dark
might sky, the blue might

star, the always
could open, the close

might earth. The doves
are just around

the corner, like a train
before it turns into

view. Miles Davis was
right: there will be fewer

chords but infinite possibilities
as to what to do with them. The doves

are coming, true,
true true.

From: http://www.versedaily.org/kindofblue.shtml

Date: 2004

By: Angie Estes (1950- )

Wednesday, 27 January 2021

Many Happy Returns: 26/1/1938 by Tim Thorne

A carriage-load of Kooris* was brought in
from the reserve at Menindee.
They were taken straight from the train and locked
in the Redfern police barracks stable,
guarded by dogs until the 26th.

Then they emerged, ready to play their part.
Wearing leaves, they were chased along the beach
by people dressed as British soldiers,
carrying bayonets. The organisers, it seemed,
hadn’t needed to bring these people in specially
nor lock and guard them like a surprise gift.

Amateur historical and theatrical
society members just love
that sort of thing. Party games and dressing up
are marks of a civilised culture:
playhouse or drawing room, parliament or church.

After sharing a float in the parade
like jolly good fellows, the Kooris were sent back
next day to their tin sheds by the Darling.

*Kooris are one of Australia’s Indigenous peoples.

From: https://www.poetrylibrary.edu.au/poets/thorne-tim/poems/many-happy-returns-2611938-0778054

Date: 2004

By: Tim Thorne (1944- )

Wednesday, 28 October 2020

Water Jealousy by Amanda Auchter

The sink fills with its tenants:
each side is a little apartment.

The fork tumbles first, its tines
a lost instrument. I carry its tune.

I could be rubber, I could be stone.

I resume my jealousy of solid objects,
fill all spaces: machine life, street life, sky life.

This is a world of floating continents—
last night’s meal, the good china, body of glass.

An odd stick-woman shoos me away with a sponge.

Little green floatation device.

I feel a plate, I feel a drain.

From: https://thediagram.com/4_5/auchter.html

Date: 2004

By: Amanda Auchter (1977- )