Posts tagged ‘2015’

Saturday, 22 June 2019

You May Have Heard of Me by Shazea Quraishi

My father was a bear.
He carried me through forest, sky
and over frozen sea. At night
I lay along his back
wrapped in fur and heat
and while I slept, he ran,
never stopping to rest, never
letting me fall.
He showed me how to be as careful as stone,
sharp as thorn and quick
as weather. When he hunted alone
he’d leave me somewhere safe – high up a tree
or deep within a cave.
And then a day went on …
He didn’t come.
I looked and looked for him.
The seasons changed and changed again.
Sleep became my friend. It even brought my father back.
The dark was like his fur,
the sea’s breathing echoed his breathing.
I left home behind, an empty skin.
Alone, I walked taller, balanced better.
So I came to the gates of this city
—tall, black gates with teeth.
Here you find me, keeping my mouth small,
hiding pointed teeth and telling stories,
concealing their truth as I conceal
the thick black fur on my back.

From: https://www.theguardian.com/books/booksblog/2015/may/18/poem-of-the-week-shazea-quraishi

Date: 2015

By: Shazea Quraishi (19??- )

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Friday, 21 June 2019

Saving Daylight by C. M. Davidson-Pickett

Suppose for a moment you live in a land,
Amazed at what happens during summer solstice.
Very strange things begin to occur,
Instantly, there is little darkness,
Night that we are so used to
Gone; what is left is the brilliant colors.

Daylight from dusk to dawn to dusk again,
Alight in all its energy and brightness.
Yes, we are north of the sixtieth parallel;
Land of the midnight sun.
I have been here before and seen things,
Gazed upon the horizon, waiting for darkness to reappear,
Holding on to summer in all its life, love and beauty;
To see it ebb once more as daylight fades to night.

From: https://www.poetrysoup.com/poem/saving_daylight_638838

Date: 2015

By: C. M. Davidson-Pickett (19??- )

Tuesday, 19 February 2019

Cormorants by Alan Feldman

The colder the wind, the more they seem to perch
in clusters, like a small minion
of hasids, or like Puritans at a burial.
And when they rise in fright,
they head off different ways,
a survival tactic programmed into their genes
from back when they were dinosaurs.

They eat and eat,
without the gaucherie of chewing,
fish as large as they can swallow.
And in China, where they may fish for decades,
wearing a ring constricting their necks,
they are honored in old age with a pension,
living with imprinted loyalty with their human families,
and eating any sized fish they want.

Look at their long necks as they fly:
like living crosses. And notice how,
when they ride amidst the waves,
they dive all the way under, at home
in an element that isn’t theirs.
Watch them dry their wings in the breeze
like laundry––black laundry––
lest, having no oil in their feathers,
they grow logy and drown.

Can you say they are really of the devil?
Part of the bargain we make
to live on this hostile and abundant sea?
When we see them perched
amidst the stench of whatever boat they meet on,
fouling their resting place with vital abandon,
their wings stretched wide in the sun,
we have to remember they are birds,
hoisting the same black flag
of survival that we hoist,
hungry beings that we are.

From: https://acrossthemargin.com/three-poems-by-alan-feldman/

Date: 2015

By: Alan Feldman (19??- )

Thursday, 20 December 2018

Summer Solstice by Rose Burgunder Styron

Suddenly,
there’s nothing to do
and too much—
the lawn, paths, woods
were never so green
white blossoms of every
size and shape—hydrangea,
Chinese dogwood, mock orange
spill their glistening—

Inside, your photographs
and books stand guard
in orderly array. Your
half of the bed is smooth,
the pillows plump, the phone
just out of reach beyond it.

No one calls early—they
remember your late hours.
The shades are down, so
sunlight’s held at bay
though not the fabulous winged
song of summer birds
waking me as ever, always in our
favorite room, our season.
Yesterday’s mail on the desk
newspaper, unread. Plans for the day
hover bright out all our doors—

Don’t think of evening.

From: https://www.poets.org/poetsorg/poem/summer-solstice

Date: 2015

By: Rose Burgunder Styron (1928- )

Monday, 10 December 2018

Elijah Versus Santa by Richard Michelson

Weight advantage: Santa. Sugar and milk
at every stop, the stout man shimmies
down one more chimney, sack of desire
chuting behind, while Elijah, skinny
and empty-handed, slips in invisible as
a once favored, since disgraced uncle,
through the propped open side door.
Inside, I’ve been awaiting a miracle
since 1962, my 9 year-old self slouching
on this slip-covered sofa, Manischewitz
stashed beneath the cushion. Where
are the fire-tinged horses, the chariots
to transport me? Where is the whirlwind
and brimstone? Instead, our dull-bladed
sleigh rusts in the storage bin beneath
the building’s soot-covered flight
of cellar stairs. Come back to me father,
during December’s perfect snowfall
and pull me once more up Schenck
and down Pitkin, where the line wraps
around Church Hall. Show me, again,
the snapshot of the skull-capped boy
on Santa’s lap. Let me laugh this time
and levitate like a magician’s assistant,
awed by my own weightlessness. Give me
the imagination to climb the fire escape
and look up toward the Godless Heavens
and to marvel at the ordinary sky.

From: Michelson, Richard, More Money than God, 2015, University of Pittsburgh Press: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, p. [unnumbered].
(https://books.google.com.au/books?id=b1izBgAAQBAJ)

Date: 2015

By: Richard Michelson (1953- )

Wednesday, 10 October 2018

Bujold by Annie Freud

She marries him in a ‘marriage blanc’
so that he can stay in the country.
He is a fugitive whose visa has run out
and there is every kind of impediment:

the ambitious local cop in dark glasses
and leather jacket, determined to hound them,
the provocative younger sister, the absurd mother
giving a huge white wedding nobody wants.

An explosion of debauchery, revelry and waste
saw the church lose its hold on the medieval world,
she tells her class of docile undergraduates,
and feels the need for a full-time man.

At forty, she is ravishing in a haggard way
and he looks seedy with his too-long hair.
There are some good jokes about lonely, frightened
people trapped in forced proximity.

I know this place is a mess, but don’t touch anything.
I know where everything is. The cafetière is complicated.
Love prevails in the end. We never see them
in bed and they only ever kiss at the wedding.

From: http://poems.poetrysociety.org.uk/poets/annie-freud/

Date: 2015

By: Annie Freud (1948- )

Tuesday, 2 October 2018

Between Nectarines, a Genealogy by Doireann Ní Ghríofa

All winter, the infant inside me dreams
of nectarines. She thirsts
for dimpled clefts, jewel-juice, sweet guzzled flesh.

With each craving, I think of my great-grandmother,
stranger, girl who crossed an ocean
to scour grates and polish brass,

and returned home in a red
dress and cloche hat, brimful
with remembered fruits —

not our blackberries or crabapples,
no: she spoke of blood
-oranges, mangos, blueberries, nectarines.

I stand between them now
on the cold tile of this dawn-dark kitchen,
pressing my teeth through skin to pulp and pit.

In a hollow husk, it waits: small, furred seed,
hardy cargo, clenched
between future and past.

All winter, it dreams.

From: http://one.jacarpress.com/issue-7/

Date: 2015

By: Doireann Ní Ghríofa (1981- )

Sunday, 1 July 2018

Jellyfish by Leonard Ng

By the breakwater I watched: a pulsing dome
like a beating heart or a bird’s steady wings,
barely visible in the lazy brown eddies
of the current and tide.

Then lying on the sand, a heap of gelatin
clear as the back of a wristwatch
revealing its precise machinery,
ticking away
the final fleeting seconds of its life.

Rolling now and again in the foam, sand-choked.
Marooned on the drying shore,
cast up without malice by the waves
with all the care given to shells or sailors.
Rocking like an infant in the surf.

The birds will not eat it
and the crabs will not come.
Only the sea will rise
to take the body back again
with the next tide,
without any pomp or solemn procession,
back again
into the waters once its home.

From: https://kitaab.org/2015/12/28/three-poems-by-leonard-ng/

Date: 2015

By: Leonard Ng (1979- )

Thursday, 28 June 2018

Phone-Booths by Robert Gibb

Back before the private life went public
Like shares, they were a fixture of it, the old indoor
Wooden ones, sentinel or all in a line

With their seats and shelves and pleated fronts,
The lights coming on when they shut.

You sat in a glassed-faced closet the size of the confessional,
Dropping coins through their slots,
The clang of change tripping the circuitry open.

The dials were like the clocks back then,
Circumferenced with numbers,

The phones black-boxed to walls
On which clumsy glyphs and messages were scrawled.

So there you were, snugged in, out of earshot
And ready to have your say.

Landlines, sea-floor cables, the creosote-soaked poles—
You were connected to all of it.

Which has now turned all to cloud.

From: https://thegalwayreview.com/2015/03/17/robert-gibb-five-poems/

Date: 2015

By: Robert Gibb (1946- )

Thursday, 7 June 2018

In the Mountains by Wang Wei

Bramble stream, white rocks jutting out.
Heaven cold, red leaves scarce. No rain

up here where the mountain road ends,
sky stains robes empty kingfisher-blue.

From: https://www.terrain.org/2015/poetry/wang-wei-david-hinton/

Date: 8th century (original); 2015 (translation)

By: Wang Wei (699-759)

Translated by: David Hinton (1954- )