Friday, May 29, 2015

Bye, bye, Corinthians?

  Is it just possible, that
  we may be putting away the
  the Bush era's signature,

  Just ask anyone you know,
  if we could stand it.

  to the Corinthians
  I, 13, 8-13

i   Elliott Erwitt

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Robotic continuities

We seem not to inhabit uninteresting
times, in one respect at least. As
our sailors have been abandoned to
legitimacy in their private conduct,
the drone has emerged as the wunder-
kind of lawless warmaking, infalli-
bly of one mind with authority, our
totem of unit cohesion, incarnate.
Will matrimony just hasten this re-
nascence of bitter, senseless venery,
and other compulsions of repression?

The jest rides only on coincidence -
is each constraint on the authority
state to be balanced by its escape,
denying us all breath of separation.

   To take up where you left off!
   Without a breath of separation
   your new movement is begun.
   The heart pulses on, developing
   a future. You do not rest
   your lips, your ears, your fingers.
   The field is full of daisies
   and the sun is shining greenly.
   It is a musical development,
   taxing and inspired, before
   the old love has echoed away.
   To the eager suggestion of a new
   face. It will be a great movement!
   begun warmly and without pause.
   You have carried yourself to a new
   world, put off the final applause.

Frank O'Hara
Donald Allen
Poems Retrieved
Dedicated to Edwin Denby
City Lights, 2013©

René Burri
Sailors, Beirut

Monday, May 25, 2015

Designing conversation

   an expansive category,
   inventing imagery one
   can move in

School of Turner
Scene on the Loire
ca 1830
Ashmolean Collection

Memorial Day

   But to the extent that I can
   understand my own motives ..
   I want to keep the history of
   our generation fresh in my
   mind so that I don't let my-
   self slip - it is so comfor-
   table sometimes, so enter-
   taining - into easy cynicism.
   I want the anger that comes
   with its harsh ironies and
   absurdities, to keep my own
   sense of location from dying
   while I am still capable of

 The text is a diary entry
 by a character in a novel
 by a classicist and teach-
 er of distinct stature in
 my experience. Out of con-
 text, it is merely a frag-
 ment of characterisation,
 not the summation it can-
 not be, of external or in-
 ternal conditions. It ad-
 dresses remembrance as if
 conservation were still a
 respectable, and not just
 a nostalgic undertaking.

Edmund Keeley
A Wilderness Called Peace
[Tacitus, Agricola, 98 A.D.]
Simon & Schuster, 1985©

Jack Rans

Sunday, May 24, 2015

I think there'll be no last one in

    But fruit still fills our sudden branches,
    The wind still what makes us move.


Nathaniel Perry
Nine Acres
  Grafting Fruit Trees
American Poetry Review
Copper Canyon Press