Sunday, June 17, 2018

Thought for the Day

Light every morning dawns through the trees. Surely
this is worth more than one life.
~ Marilyn Nelson
__________________________________

Quoted from Concluding Lines of "A Charmed Life" from Carver: a Life in Poems (Front Street/Boyds Mills Press, 2001), by Marilyn Nelson, Winner, 2017 NSK Neustadt Prize for Children's Literature (University of Oklahoma/World Literature Today)*

Marilyn Nelson, American Poet, Children's Book Author, Translator; Chancellor, Academy of American Poets; Poet-in-Residence, Cathedral of St. John the Divine; Professor Emeritus of English, University of Connecticut; Former Poet Laureate of Connecticut (2001-2006)

* An excerpt from "A Charmed Life" including the quoted lines is in Marilyn Nelson, "Bowled Over — A Life with Poem: The 2017 NSK Prize Keynote", World Literature Today, March 2018.

Hayan Charara, "Reinventing and Reimagining the World: A Tribute to Marilyn Nelson", World Literature Today, March 2018

Sarah Rebecca Warren, "Telling It Slant: A Conversation with Marilyn Nelson", World Literature Today, March 2018

Saturday, June 16, 2018

Saturday Short

Today's short is a quick look at the award-winning and beautifully hand-illustrated Gorogoa (Annapurna Interactive, 2017), an interactive game created by Jason Roberts in which players move panels of art to "read" the storybook and solve the puzzle.




Jason Roberts on FaceBook

Jason Roberts on Vimeo

Sunday, June 10, 2018

Thought for the Day

Closing the distance between one's self and others opens us
as it breaks down barriers. Learning how to do that, in one's
art and in one's life, is the true freedom. It helps to lead us
out of suffering. It's an act of love. . . .
~ Margaret Gibson
____________________________

Quoted from "A Conversation with Margaret Gibson", Image Journal, Spring 2018, No. 96, page 63

Margaret Gibson, Poet; Author, Most Recently, of Not Hearing the Wood Thrush* (forthcoming September 2018)

* Read a selection of poems from the collection.

Margaret Gibson Profiles at Academy of American Poets and Poetry Foundation

Saturday, June 9, 2018

Saturday Short

Today's short is the launch trailer for the documentary Whistle Words (Red Sparks Films), a film that traces how women with cancer reclaim  their voices; specifically it follows poet Charlotte Matthews's experience of breast cancer, diagnosed as stage 3, and of her post-treatment efforts to reclaim through her writing her sense of self. The trailer is based on Matthews's poem "The Greatest Show on Earth". Matthews's third book of poems is Whistle What Can't Be Said (Unicorn Press, 2016).

Additional film clips are available at the Red Sparks link above.


Read Nin Andrews's interview with Matthews at The Best American Poetry Blog (June 4, 2018).


Charlotte Matthews on FaceBook



Whistle Words on FaceBook

Red Sparks Films on FaceBook

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

You Swim Until You Can't (Poem)


You Swim Until You Can't

      for Scott Hutchinson,
         lead singer, Frightened Rabbit

You swim until you can't
see land. So gone from shore

we become a foreign substance
in your eye you can neither rub

nor let alone.

Not meant for easy oblivion.
Not meant for that long slog

to eternity where you pledged
your forever presence to love

once everything's been worked out.

We hear no distress call, eye
no hand signaling how you'll go

missing from what some called
a messy life. Water sweeps away

even a trace of your footsteps.

© 2018 Maureen E. Doallas

____________________________________

Scott Hutchinson (b. November 20, 1981) died May 10, 2018. Just 36, he left his last words in a tweet: ". . . I'm away now. Thanks."

The poem's title and opening line are a variation on "Swim Until You Can't See Land" from the Glasgow band's album The Winter of Mixed Drinks (2010).

Read Marc Hogan's May 14, 2018, article at Pitchfork, "Why Losing Frightened Rabbit's Scott Hutchinson Hurts So Much". Also see "Frightened Rabbit's Scott Hutchinson Dead at 36", also at Pitchfork.

Sunday, June 3, 2018

Thought for the Day

[. . .] everyone's grief is different, and [. . .] differs in
in small and subtle ways, according to the circumstances of loss.
~ Richard Lloyd Parry
____________________________

Quoted from Richard Lloyd Parry's excellent Ghosts of the Tsunami: Death and Life in Japan's Disaster Zone (MCD, 2017)

Richard Lloyd Parry, Asia Editor, The Times, Foreign Asia Correspondent; and Author

Richard Lloyd Parry on FaceBook and Twitter

Saturday, June 2, 2018

Saturday Short

. . . your voice is not a feather I can hold//
but a thought i draw/
across my  throat when I close my eyes—//. . . 

Today, Saturday Short brings you "Asterism", a film of a poem by Keith S. Wilson presented at MotionPoems in partnership with Cave Canem.



A selection of Wilson's poems is available at his Website.

Sunday, May 27, 2018

Thought for the Day


To conquer a beast, you must first make it beautiful.
~ Chinese Proverb
_______________________________

A variation on the proverb is used as the title of Sarah Wilson's book First, We Make the Beast Beautiful: A New Journey Through Anxiety (Dey Street Books, April 2018). Wilson first came across the proverb while reading Kay Redfield Jamison's An Unquiet Mind.

Sarah Wilson, Author; Entrepreneur; Founder, IQuitSugar (Wellness Site); Former Journalist

Sarah Wilson on FaceBook

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

One Story of Gaza (Poem)

One Story of Gaza

You never leave the same
as when you arrive.

Your mother's womb is
no longer safe from

bombs or bullets, and Israel

still cuts the grass. The buffer
zone is expanded, the fences

reinforced. What once was
taken — house by house —

calls for "deliberately inflicted
life-changing injuries."

Your return to land beyond
the pocked, sand-dusted berms

is deemed an "infiltration."

*

You stand out, are spotted.
They fire — no warning given.

You tumble, get up,
persist in your "Great March"

against their appropriation.
At the barbed border

dividing them from you,
wherever they aim,

somebody else goes down.

*

The body of ten-month-old
Layla Ghandour is carried

home from the hospital,
placed in a pink plastic basin,

washed by the light of cellphone,
wrapped in white shroud wrapped

in your flag. So small this bundle
in red and green, white and black.

*

On this, the year's bloodiest
day, you hear too well the wails

rising amid struggles amid smoke.
Sixty times one more of you falls.

Don't take this as your call to prayer,
you tell your mourning wives.

"It's God's will." "Have faith in God."

*

To be displaced is "Nakba."
What happens at their fences

where everything is used
to stop you and you and you

is catastrophe times two
on this singular sliver of land,

this Gaza stripped of peace
this land denying your claim,

and roused again to resistance.

© Maureen E. Doallas
__________________________________

The inspiration for this poem and some of the quoted material is "What the Gaza Protests Portend" at New York Books Daily, May 15, 2018.

The phrase "still cuts the grass" refers to an Israeli strategy of tolerating a level of violence from Gaza and then re-engaging, without ever finding a solution or creating peace; in other words, maintaining the status quo. I first came across the description in a 2014 Vox article about Palestinian fatalities.

Read my other poem "They Call It 'A Great Day'."

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Thought for the Day

I still don't know what dogs know.
~ Chase Twichell
___________________________

Quoted from Chase Twichell, "The Second Arrow", The American Poetry Review, May/June 2018, page 38

Chase Twichell, Award-Winning Poet and Teacher, Author Most Recently of Things As It is (Forthcoming from Copper Canyon Press, October 2018)



Chase Twichell on FaceBook