Winged and Acid Dark

A sentence with “dappled shadow” in it.
Something not sayable
spurting from the morning silence,
secret as a thrush.
The other man, the officer, who brought onions
and wine and sacks of flour,
the major with the swollen knee,
wanted intelligent conversation afterward.
Having no choice, she provided that, too.

Potsdamerplatz, May 1945.
When the first one was through he pried her mouth open.
Bashō told Rensetsu to avoid sensational materials.
If the horror of the world were the truth of the world,
he said, there would be no one to say it
and no one to say it to.
I think he recommended describing the slightly frenzied
swarming of insects near a waterfall.

Pried her mouth open and spit in it.
We pass these things on,
probably, because we are what we can imagine.
Something not sayable in the morning silence.
The mind hungering after likenesses. “Tender sky,” etc.,
curves the swallows trace in air.
-Robert Hass

Excerpt From A Wreath for Emmett Till

Emmett Till’s name still catches in my throat,

like syllables waylaid in a stutterer’s mouth.

A fourteen-year-old stutterer, in the South

to visit relatives and to be taught

the family’s ways. His mother had finally bought

that White Sox cap; she’d made him swear an oath

to be careful around white folks. She’d told him the truth

of many a Mississippi anecdote:

Some white folks have blind souls. In his suitcase

she’d packed dungarees, T-shirts, underwear,

and comic books. She’d given him a note

for the conductor, waved to his chubby face,

wondered if he’d remember to brush his hair.

Her only child. A body left to bloat.

© from A Wreath for Emmett Till
Marilyn Nelson

Fruitless Friederichstrasse, Berlin- the metro station, greased with smoke. Meine Tochter, my…

Friederichstrasse Station

Fruitless

Friederichstrasse, Berlin-
the metro station, greased with smoke.

Meine Tochter, my daughter.
I felt proud, when I realized I understood
her hysterics,

her hand slapping
the pneumatic doors
of the subway car.

But I didn’t move.

I watched her run to the end
of the tracks,

beating her palm against the yawn
that swallowed away her child
and ran on.

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Teenage Alchemist

TEENAGE ALCHEMIST

A girl’s collarbone is her best accessory.

When the mirror is allowed, they ask you
to describe your body, as if you needed a mirror for that:

your ribs ripple under your skin
like the remains of some giant prehistoric whale.
If you just slip the skin
a little looser, it can slide free.

The scientists don’t get it, the newscasters don’t get it,
why is the whale sinking? It…

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joolsandnigel said: I CAN’T WAIT TO LISTEN TO THIS LATER. SAVING IT.

You’re the best buddy

Poetry for the Radio

Poetry for the Radio

This past fall I took a class on Radio Writing, and learned how (or at least, started to learn how) to transfer my writing into a pure auditory experience. Most of what I wrote for the class were short fiction pieces, but the semester culminated in a poetic triptych (a triptych is a piece of art split into 3 parts meditating on the same theme). When I was searching for my final project, I thought…

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How I Write (aka, in which I promise I am not an architect)

How I Write (aka, in which I promise I am not an architect)

I may have mentioned this before, but I was the kind of indoor-books loving kid who gave herself homework assignments. I sat at the family computer using Publisher to create brochures on various topics, using the information I gleaned from our World Encyclopedia CDs. I also really liked algebra.

I was… what did my brother call it?

Oh yeah. A nerd.

When I got to college, I loved the research…

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Ni Pena, Ni Miedo
(no shame, nor fear)
Raúl Zurita

written in the sands of the Atacama Desert

Ni Pena, Ni Miedo

(no shame, nor fear)

Raúl Zurita

written in the sands of the Atacama Desert

Grad School: Year One in Review

literarydrunkard:

Grad School: Year One in Review

grad_school-coffee

So here we are, with a year of graduate school under my belt. In addition to my dual introspection, I’ve been considering the past year quite a bit- surveys for the school, notes for incoming students (I’m a mentor for next year’s class, which is… interesting), answering the ubiquitous “how did you like your first year?”

The answer is… complicated.

(of course)

Were there disappointments? Moments…

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Guys! I did this thing where I picked back up the blog I have that I haven’t updated in almost 7 months! Pretend to look at it? I used a gif and everything!

Still I Rise

spilledteaa:

You may write me down in history
With your bitter, twisted lies,
You may tread me in the very dirt
But still, like dust, I’ll rise.

Does my sassiness upset you?
Why are you beset with gloom?
'Cause I walk like I've got oil wells
Pumping in my living room.

Just like…

Sweet Virginia

I got a letter from the government.
It said let there be night.
I went through your trash.
There was night, all right.
I consider how your light is spent.

I have butterflies a little bit.
I have some pills I take for it.
I’ve been up since four the day before.
Agony’s a cinch to sham.

Don’t worry about the environment.
Let it kill us if it can.
I give a tiny tinker’s damn.
I put the ox behind the cart.
Consume away my snow-blind heart.

Fastened to a service animal
it is waiting for the beep.
It is waiting for the right to change.
Hello, I know you’re there, pick up.

© 2014, Michael Robbins

pofest:

https://slcpoetryfest2013.submittable.com/submit
Seriously amazing things happen to Student Readers. Not convinced? Some of our past Student Readers include Rilke, Rumi and Shakespeare. And those were just the guys who stood next to each other in line.

Guys. This is what I’m doing with my fancy background in marketing.

pofest:

https://slcpoetryfest2013.submittable.com/submit

Seriously amazing things happen to Student Readers. Not convinced? Some of our past Student Readers include Rilke, Rumi and Shakespeare. And those were just the guys who stood next to each other in line.

Guys. This is what I’m doing with my fancy background in marketing.

Thoughts on TeachingWhen I was looking at grad school, I specifically stayed away from schools that seemed to emphasize…View Post

Thoughts on Teaching

When I was looking at grad school, I specifically stayed away from schools that seemed to emphasize…

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