Posts tagged ‘2011’

Thursday, 3 January 2019

Glass Slipper Sonnet by Angela Alaimo O’Donnell

Pity the poor step-sister those big feet
she’ll never stuff in a size-six sonnet,

her flesh so fulsome the slipper seems effete,
unworthy of the labor spent on it.

But try she must, and so she makes a pass,
jams four fat toes in the narrow throat,

the fifth pig smarting, pressed against the glass
(though pain’s no stranger—she knows it by rote.)

The other shoe drops—as it is wont to do—
a second foot is squeezed into the vamp.

She stands up straight and takes a stride towards you,
her footfall heavy as a farmgirl’s tramp.

The slipper strains against those excess feet.
She hobbles onward—she has a prince to meet.

From: https://www.tweetspeakpoetry.com/2011/08/08/glass-slipper-sonnets/

Date: 2011

By: Angela Alaimo O’Donnell (19??- )

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Sunday, 9 December 2018

Beginnings by Janet Kofi-Tsekpo

When we were hungry
we tore the waves
and pulled out fish, enough to feed a family
of seals. The raw flesh
excited us. We hunted for more on land,
rabbits and voles,
ripped goats’ heads from bristling necks.
We watched the birds
and navigated the air with wood and bone.
At times, we wore
the skins of beasts.

From: https://www.pnreview.co.uk/cgi-bin/scribe?item_id=8409

Date: 2011

By: Janet Kofi-Tsekpo (19??- )

Saturday, 8 December 2018

Bitter Lake by William Wenthe

But for all its gesture
to the wild, nothing
comes more human

than this: “refuge,”
an oblong of mercy sliced
from the map.

Where hosts and dominions
of snow geese
billow and gleam

by water’s edge,
I think of Lear, dead
Cordelia in his arms.

From: https://orionmagazine.org/poetry/bitter-lake/

Date: 2011

By: William Wenthe (1957- )

Thursday, 13 September 2018

Getting By by David Harris Ebenbach

At boring jobs I used to calculate
how much I made per minute, keeping track
of the day, twelve cents by twelve cents, as it
deposited its small worth in the bank.
Once, doing temp work, I passed this along
to my equally bored supervisor,
who did her own math, compared it to mine,
and stomped off to the office manager.
She came back with a raise, and somehow I
wasn’t fired. We got back to the work of
ordering envelopes by zip code, by
a labor of something other than love.
A labor of minutes, and here’s the thing
about minutes: they just keep on passing.

From: https://workmagazinearchives.wordpress.com/back-issues/davidharrisebenbach4172011/

Date: 2011

By: David Harris Ebenbach (1972- )

Tuesday, 19 June 2018

Mother’s Day by David Young

 —for my children

I see her doing something simple, paying bills,
or leafing through a magazine or book,
and wish that I could say, and she could hear,

that now I start to understand her love
for all of us, the fullness of it.

It burns there in the past, beyond my reach,
a modest lamp.

From: https://www.poets.org/poetsorg/poem/mothers-day

Date: 2011

By: David Young (1936- )

Thursday, 31 May 2018

The Dream by Aracelis Girmay

Last night, all night
the dream, the dead
mother, my small sister,
tiny, her mouth
over my shoulder
(screaming) like a knapsack
when she heard the news,
& my brother playing
the stereo. I howled
like the coyotes; myself.
& saw the light outside
below the window, my mother,
young, playing with me
at a rock, in some sunlight
falling over us. I was small.
An old & famous woman
asked her questions:
Who wrote this dream?
I wanted to know.
My brother thought
it was our mother
who wrote it
when she was old.
She did not die, he thought.
But I knew, & called down
to the cotton-head of her then, when
she could not see or hear me.
She would never hear me.
I was not capable of talking
then, yet, & she had died,
after all, & the mother
I call to tell the dream
will not remember, after all
she was not born then, yet,
& needed the first mother to die
before she could use her name
& feed her children.

From: https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/56718/the-dream-56d2397aea737

Date: 2011

By: Aracelis Girmay (1977- )

Wednesday, 16 May 2018

Lausavísa by Hildr Hrólfsdóttir nefju

You frame my father’s namesake*
and force him on the wolf’s road.
You hound the high-born hero.
How, lord, can you allow this?
I warn you: ‘ware, warrior!
Wolf-deeds reap warfare.
The lupine lad may lust
for his former’s lord livestock.

*This skald plays on the name of its subject (Hrolf) which partly means “wolf”. It was spoken by Hrolf’s mother as she asked King Harald of Norway why her son, accused of plundering livestock, had been sent into exile.

From: Straubhaar, Sandra Ballif, Old Norse Women’s Poetry: The Voices of Female Skalds, Translated from the Old Norse, 2011, D. S. Brewer: Cambridge, p. 12.
(https://books.google.com.au/books?id=vePMQ7PFSY4C)

Date: 10th century (original in Old Norse); 2011 (translation in English)

By: Hildr Hrólfsdóttir nefju (10th century)

Translated by: Sandra Ballif Straubhaar (19??- )

Wednesday, 27 September 2017

WalMart Supercenter by Erika Meitner

God Bless America says the bumper sticker on the racer-red
Rascal scooter that accidentally cuts me off in the Walmart parking lot
after a guy in a tricked out jeep with rims like chrome pinwheels tries
to pick me up by honking, all before I make it past the automatic doors
waiting to accept my unwashed hair, my flip-flops, my lounge pants.

The old man on the scooter waves, sports a straw boater banded in blue & white,
and may or may not be the official greeter, but everyone here sure is friendly—
even the faces of plastic bags, which wink yellow and crinkle with kindness,
sound like applause when they brush the legs of shoppers carrying them
to their cars. In Port Charlotte, a woman’s body was found in a Jetta

in a Walmart Parking lot. In a Walmart parking lot in Springfield,
a macaque monkey named Charlie attacked an eight year-old girl.
I am a Walmart shopper, a tract-house dweller—the developments
you can see clearly from every highway in America that’s not jammed up
on farmland or pinned in by mountains. I park my car at a slant in the lot,

hugged tight by my neighbors’ pickups. I drive my enormous cart
through the aisles and fill it with Pampers, tube socks, juice boxes, fruit.
In the parking lot of the McAllen Walmart, a woman tried to sell six
Bengal Tiger cubs to a group of Mexican day laborers. A man carjacked
a woman in the parking lot of the West Mifflin Walmart, then ran

under a bridge and disappeared. Which is to say that the world
we expect to see looks hewn from wood, is maybe two lanes wide,
has readily identifiable produce, and the one we’ve got has jackknifed itself
on the side of the interstate and keeps skidding. The one we’ve got has clouds
traveling so fast across the sky it’s like they’re tied to an electric current.

But electricity is the same for everybody. It comes in the top of your head
and goes out your shoes, which will walk through these automatic doors.
In the Corbin Walmart parking lot a woman with a small amount of cash
was arrested for getting in and out of trucks. A man stepped out of his car
in the Columbus Walmart parking lot, and shot himself. I get in the checkout line

behind a lighted number on a pole. The man in front of me jangles coins
in his pocket, rocks back and forth on his heels. The girl in front of him
carefully peels four moist dimes from her palm to pay for a small container
of honey-mustard dipping sauce. In the parking lot of the LaFayette Walmart,
grandparents left their disabled 2 year-old grandson sitting in a shopping cart

and drove away. Employees in the parking lot at the La Grange Walmart
found a box containing seven abandoned kittens. I am not a Christian or
prone to idioms, but when the cashier says she is grateful for small mercies,
I nod in assent. Kyrie eleison, Christe eleison. The Latin root of mercy
means price paid, wages, merchandise, though now we use it as

compassion shown to a person in a position of powerlessness,
and sometimes forgiveness towards a person with no right
to claim it. God is merciful and gracious, but not just.
In the Walmart parking lot in Stockton, a man considered armed
and dangerous attacked his wife, beating her unconscious.

A couple tried to sell their 6-month-old for twenty-five bucks
to buy meth in the Salinas Walmart parking lot. We who are in danger,
remember: mercy has a human heart. Mercy with her tender mitigations,
slow to anger and great in lovingkindness, with her blue employee’s smock
emblazoned with How may I help you? Someone in this place have mercy on us.

From: http://therumpus.net/2011/11/walmart-supercenter-a-rumpus-original-poem-by-erika-meitner/

Date: 2011

By: Erika Meitner (1975- )

Wednesday, 2 August 2017

A Rave in North Norfolk by Tim Cockburn

For Laura

After the rave the steamed-up Peugeots
that, nightlong, blunted the field’s edge
slunk off one by one like a flagging picket,
leaving a stillness of litter-strewn hedges
the waterfowl dared enter back into.
On the lawn tall shadows tucked stickered decks
into retracted back seats, whilst the few
who remained in the lamp-lit mill slept,
not noticing how like kicked up sediment
settling the displaced calm restored
itself around them, or how, beyond the lane,
the shallow-pooled stretches sharpened:
the coloured smudge of ballast and gorse
beside a decelerating train.

From: https://peonymoon.wordpress.com/tag/tim-cockburn-poems/

Date: 2011

By: Tim Cockburn (1985- )

Tuesday, 16 May 2017

Danny by Stephen Emmerson

In your house the doors keep the water in,
Brass knuckles on the side drip with green skin.
The directionless manoeuvres that you make point all ways
Except north, north being reserved completely for your
Indiscretions, your powdered crepuscules, your whisky
Ringed shirt and tie, your resin gunked thumbs
And lungs. Streams of marbled sodium crystallise
And abrogate the drunk compartments that divide stairs.
Alone in your collapse, the living room turned upside down
Magnetic tape hung over your hair, unshaven for three days
Of booze and empty headed grin of aphex twin parked
On your face like a tow truck dragging a ford fiesta
Through the rain. I remembered you walking down
Engine gate, plastic bags from Woolworths full
Of dog food in each hand, headphones in your ears
The jack plug hanging loose as if plugged into the air,
As if plugged into that divine brilliance of sunlight you so
Often screamed about. Now you are ready to be part
Of that noise, a trunk of pastel sketches and some poems
About dogs. You are ether rising into your own eyes, and piss
Sprayed over the holding cell bars, the stench will stay
For days, will ignite wisps of willow in the marshes by
The pond where you wake up one day, thoroughly drenched
In death but still awake, and know for certain that life
Is more a poem than a film.

From: http://www.greatworks.org.uk/poems/se7.html

Date: 2011

By: Stephen Emmerson (19??- )