Posts tagged ‘2005’

Friday, 22 February 2019

Teasing Lu Chang, a Bridesmaid from Down South by Song Ruoshen

For the wedding, a mansion’s
tower—twelve floors
upheld by a turquoise sky:

our nubile hen, her virile mate,
stand ready, face
to face on their nuptial tree.

But immortal Mistress Couple-up
brings heaven’s decree
to the guards round the women’s rooms:

To this Han palace, here in the north,
don’t let that drawling
country music in!

From: Larsen, Jeanne (ed. and transl.), Willow, Wine, Mirror, Moon: Women’s Poems from Tang China, 2005, BOA Editions: New York, p. [unnumbered].
(https://books.google.com.au/books?id=OS1aDwAAQBAJ)

Date: c800 (original); 2005 (translation)

By: Song Ruoshen (768-820)

Translated by: Jeanne Larsen (1950- )

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Friday, 18 January 2019

The Beautiful Animal by Geoffrey Brock

By the time I recalled that it is also
terrifying, we had gone too far into
the charmed woods to return. It was then

the beautiful animal appeared in our path:
ribs jutting, moon-fed eyes moving
from me to you and back. If we show

none of the fear, it may tire of waiting
for the triggering flight, it may ask only
to lie between us and sleep, fur warm

on our skin, breath sweet on our necks
as it dreams of slaughter, as we dream
alternately of feeding and taming it

and of being the first to run. The woods
close tight around us, lying nested here
like spoons in a drawer of knives, to see

who wakes first, and from which dream.

From: https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/51083/the-beautiful-animal

Date: 2005

By: Geoffrey Brock (964- )

Monday, 10 September 2018

Bargain Hunt by Ron Padgett

                     for Tessie

Suppose you found a bargain so incredible
you stood there stunned for a moment
unable to believe that this thing could be
for sale at such a low price: that is what happens
when you are born, and as the years go by
the price goes up and up until, near the end
of your life, it is so high that you lie there
stunned forever.

From: http://jacketmagazine.com/27/padg.html

Date: 2005

By: Ron Padgett (1942- )

Sunday, 26 August 2018

Instructions for Winter by Ted Genoways

Eagle, Alaska

You must private away a secret summer,
cached and fed by darkness like sourdough
in a larder, so that each noon numbered
in lamplight is matched by a midnight, yellow

with the slant of June. Against such permafrost,
you must toughen yourself on carrion;
you must fatten on summer—berries and moss—
to carry you across the windswept barrens.

Live—but remember the reason, source
and abyss where everything lives dies.
And when the first flakes swirl into drifts, hold

summer close and let winter run its course.
Curl in your den, sleep; and when you arise,
shoulder forth lean and perfected by cold.

From: https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poetrymagazine/browse?volume=185&issue=4&page=34

Date: 2005

By: Ted Genoways (1972- )

Monday, 18 June 2018

Poems for Parting: 2 by Du Mu

Too much love
somehow became
no love at all

over this farewell bottle
we can’t manage
even a friendly smile

only the candle
seems to be able
to generate some feeling

all night
it weeps
little wax tears.

From: https://www.wordswithoutborders.org/article/poems-for-parting

Date: c840 (original); 2005 (translation)

By: Du Mu (803-852)

Translated by: David Young (1936- ) and Jiann I. Lin (19??- )

Friday, 26 January 2018

Journey of Migration…the First Step by Ferit Berk

‘A Teacher Died in Australia’ headline news
spreads quickly to reach Ankara and beyond.
Saddened, my friends believe that I am dead
when the corpse of a teacher is sent home.

The end of 1979 and the beginning of 1980,
in Alitalia a different New Year and its celebration,
beloved ones with me only in my memory
as I celebrate the New Year among strangers.

A stormy day starts the journey to Australia
A cold weather, the temperature below zero
a thirty-eight hour flight with some breaks from Ankara
and I, unable to sleep from excitement and anxiety

While standing on the threshold of this New Year.
I am talking to myself… and asking questions:
What if Australia is never reached? Or
if reached, fails to take a hold on my emotions?
What if this new land does not meet expectations?

From: http://pandora.nla.gov.au/pan/38493/20071130-0004/www.pen.org.au/docs/Quarterly1205.pdf

Date: 2005

By: Ferit Berk (1937- )

Monday, 16 October 2017

Speaking in Tongues by Mary Rose O’Reilley

I go to church every Sunday
though I don’t believe a word of it,
because the longing for God
is a prayer said in the bones.

When people call on Jesus
I move to a place in the body
where such words rise,
one of the valleys
where hope pins itself to desire;
we have so much landscape like that
you’d think we were made
to sustain a cry.

When the old men around me
lift their hands
as though someone has cornered them,
giving it all away,
I remember a dock on the estuary,
watching a heron get airborne against the odds.
It’s the transitional moment that baffles me—
how she composes her rickety
grocery cart of a body
to make that flight.

The pine siskin, stalled on a windy coast,
remembers the woods
she will long for when needs arise; so
the boreal forest composes itself in my mind:
first as a rift, absence,
then in a tumble of words
undone from sense, like the stutter
you hear  when somebody falls
over the cliff of language.  Call it a gift.

From: https://www.poets.org/poetsorg/poem/speaking-tongues

Date: 2005

By: Mary Rose O’Reilley (1944- )

Friday, 23 June 2017

Save Water, Prodike by Rufinus

Save water, Prodike-
bath with a friend!
We’ll crown each other with foam,
and knock back some champagne.
We haven’t all that long
before our wrinkles mean
we’re past our shag-by date –
not just that the water is too hot.

From: http://www.poetrymagazines.org.uk/magazine/record.asp?id=16942

Date: ?3rd century (original in Greek); 2005 (translation in English)

By: Rufinus (?3rd century)

Translated by: Neil Philip (19??-)

Monday, 5 June 2017

The New York Poem by Sam Hamill

I sit in the dark, not brooding
exactly, not waiting for the dawn
that is just beginning, at six-twenty-one,
in gray October light behind the trees.
I sit, breathing, mind turning on its wheel.

Hayden writes, “What use is poetry
in times like these?” And I suppose
I understand when he says, “A poet
simply cannot comprehend
any meaning in such slaughter.”

Nevertheless, in the grip of horror,
I turn to poetry, not prose,
to help me come to terms—
such as can be— with the lies, murders
and breathtaking hypocrisies

of those who would lead a nation
or a church. “What use is poetry?”
I sat down September twelfth,
two-thousand-one in the Common Era,
and read Rumi and kissed the ground.

And now that millions starve
in the name of holy war? Every war
is holy. It is the same pathetic story
from which we derive
“biblical proportion.”

I hear Pilate’s footsteps ring
on cobblestone, the voice of Joe McCarthy
cursing in the senate, Fat Boy exploding
as the whole sky shudders.
In New York City, the crashes

and subsequent collapses
created seismic waves. To begin to speak
of the dead, of the dying… how
can a poet speak of proportion any more
at all? Yet as the old Greek said,

“We walk on the faces of the dead.”
The dark fall sky grows blue.
Alone among ash and bones and ruins,
Tu Fu and Basho write the poem.
The last trace of blind rage fades

and a mute sadness settles in,
like dust, for the long, long haul. But if
I do not get up and sing,
if I do not get up and dance again,
the savages will win.

I’ll kiss the sword that kills me if I must.

From: http://www.lyrikline.org/en/poems/new-york-poem-4534#.WSK5KeS1uM8

Date: 2005

By: Sam Hamill (1943- )

Friday, 3 February 2017

Moon in the Window by Dorianne Laux

I wish I could say I was the kind of child
who watched the moon from her window,
would turn toward it and wonder.
I never wondered. I read. Dark signs
that crawled toward the edge of the page.
It took me years to grow a heart
from paper and glue. All I had
was a flashlight, bright as the moon,
a white hole blazing beneath the sheets.

From: http://thescreamonline.com/poetry/laux/laux.html

Date: 2005

By: Dorianne Laux (1952- )