Friday, December 23, 2011


is not a shapely
blot upon a page, not 
a metric cascade
of sweet and scented
syllables tumbling 
through the air, nor
is it the tap and click
of keys encoding
Important Thoughts
and Feelings Deep
across a backlit
screen. Poetry is
none of these
because it is
the quid of things,
which is why 
we find it
so infrequently
in words, and so 
rarely in the minds 
of those accounted 
wisest. Poetry 
is the cooling
ash that holds
the form of what was
burned and has not 
fallen through 
the grate. It is 
the pause 
in the slide of slightly
oily fingertips
along a tingling
thigh. It is
the quick slip
caught in the middle
of an old and 
well-told lie.

1 comment:

B. Glen Rotchin said...

For me a poem
is worked soil
turned and watered
a thousand times over
green profusions pruned
with blunt tools
strangling weeds uprooted
dug out stones cast aside
on a growing pile
sweaty body bending
as praying bodies must
that draw closer to their source
pale sifting fingers squirming
through black earth till
the stiff spine refuses
to straighten up again.

Amid the struggle questions:
Does the perfect poem radiate
like a garden in bloom
multi-coloured bands expanding
outward forever?
Or does it zero in
on a single symmetrical flower
a golden bull’s-eye word
the unpronounceable Name
as succinct, precise and encompassing
as the well-aimed arrow-point
embedded with a whack
into silence?

And how can a tired man
awaken from his cramped cage of bones
to yawn and stretch
at the long sun-circled day
as it reaches its perfect
unheralded conclusion?