poems we like

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crystalball
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Re: poems we like

Post by crystalball » Sun May 10, 2015 9:53 pm

tonieee wrote:I can't really think were to put this but it's kind of like a poem a bit. It's an interactive thing called doggerland about global warming and becoming a parent and other stuff.

http://ifdb.tads.org/viewgame?id=zkr5c0rsbeceihr5
I'm not sure what I'm looking at but it's something amazing.

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Re: poems we like

Post by crystalball » Thu May 21, 2015 2:38 pm

The latest 'climate change' poem in the Guardian is great (and also about Doggerland):

'Doggerland' by Jo Bell

Out from Cromer in an easy sea, Pilgrim Lockwood
cast his nets and fetched up a harpoon.
Twelve thousand years had blunted not one barb.
An antler sharpened to a spike, a bony bread knife
from a time of glassy uplands and no bread:
Greetings from Doggerland, it said.

It’s cold. We answer ice with elk and mammoth, larks
and people like you. We are few. We hunt and eat and walk
and then move on, or fall. There are midges
but you can’t have everything. We fish or fowl;
we stalk carp-fat lagoons with ivory spears.
Our softened swamps are thick with eels. We sing.


Pilgrim felt his feet transparent on the deck, a sailor
treading uplands sixty fathoms back; saw nettled deer tracks
pooling, inch by sodden inch, into a whaler’s channel;
inlands islanded and highlands turned to shipping hazards,
fellsides lessened to a knuckled string; the sly brine
loosing peat from longbones, locking snails into the bedrock.

He turned for harbour, kissed the quoins of every house
and took to hillwalking. Time, he said, was water:
water, time. At neap tides he felt England’s backbone
shift and shiver; saw the caverns fill, the railways rivered
and the Pennine mackerel flashing through lead mines,
the last dove lifting from the summit of Lose Hill.

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Re: poems we like

Post by humblebee » Thu May 21, 2015 3:23 pm

Wow!

Love it. Thanks for posting!

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Re: poems we like

Post by michael » Fri Jun 19, 2015 1:37 am

Down below Riverside Park
On the river side of the West Side Highway,
I walked along the bicycle path
The Hudson flows past hugely,
Across the way from New Jersey

That's the first verse of a poem by Frederick Seidel called "Down below Riverside Park, from a recent London Review. I like that verse a lot and I think it's to do with the rhyme, particularly the way the last line echoes the one before it, "The Hudson flows past hugely,/Across the way from New Jersey". There's something sort of childlike about the sound of that, perhaps about the sound of the whole verse, but I don't think that really gets at what's going on there.

What is going on there?

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Re: poems we like

Post by humblebee » Fri Jun 19, 2015 10:19 am

michael wrote:Down below Riverside Park
On the river side of the West Side Highway,
I walked along the bicycle path
The Hudson flows past hugely,
Across the way from New Jersey

That's the first verse of a poem by Frederick Seidel called "Down below Riverside Park, from a recent London Review. I like that verse a lot and I think it's to do with the rhyme, particularly the way the last line echoes the one before it, "The Hudson flows past hugely,/Across the way from New Jersey". There's something sort of childlike about the sound of that, perhaps about the sound of the whole verse, but I don't think that really gets at what's going on there.

What is going on there?
I love the deluge of placenames and prepositions there. And the repetition of 'side'... all of this puts across a real sense of immersion in these places which could be stimulating or overwhelming, depending on how it's approached ('approached' in the senses of mindset *and* orientation). The city as a subjective experience, ambiguous instead of concrete (and glass and steel). It's psychogeography in verse - which gets me quite excited.

Also it puts me in the mind a bit of Blake's 'London' - "I walked along each charter'd street/Near where the charter'd Thames doth flow", I think it is - which can't be a bad thing.

Better stop there or I'll be at it all day. Thanks for posting it!

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Re: poems we like

Post by michael » Sun Jun 21, 2015 8:52 am

Yeah, the repetition of "side". Also the rhyme of "Park" and "path". There are a lot of prepositions, I hadn't noticed that, "below", "on", "along", "across". He really pinpoints his position. It's almost geometrical.

I returned that London Review to the library but I'll get it again this week and add the other verses.

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Re: poems we like

Post by crystalball » Sun Jun 21, 2015 11:20 pm

"The Hudson flows past hugely" - I love that. It'd be great to read the whole poem. Thanks Michael!

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Re: poems we like

Post by michael » Sun Jul 05, 2015 3:02 am

And on the other side of the river,
The New Jersey side, full of ugly,
I saw miserable architecture,
I saw the efforts to make something,
I saw somethings that were nothing.

On a stroll near Gracie Mansion
Along the walkway above the East River,
I stayed optimistic till
The neon sign of hope stuttered out in my heart,
The long-lasting stopped smiling.

Why does one write with such gloom and complain
About the joy of being alive?
About wearing a veil of lovely rain
That sweetens an endless summer lawn,
And the air smells always so fresh?

So right now, when I go to a party,
A thing that I do rarely,
I have a twelve-minute rule.
I show up and people are grateful.
People know I don't go to parties.

They see me coming in.
I stay twelve minutes and leave,
But without saying goodbye.
They remember I've been there, they're grateful.
And that's my twelve-minute rule.

Pardon me, her tits are beautifuls,
Tits, her beautifuls,
Side-by-side heated outdoor swimming pools
Steaming away outdoors
In the freezing cold snap of life.

I go for a swim in a mirror.
The mirror opens and drools
Heated swimming pools.
Living a life leaves a trail of slime.
Hurry up, there isn't time.

Means it's seventy years ago
Outside the coal yards at Duncan and Vandeventer.
The trucks are waiting to go out
To feed the poor their coal.
The rich have already eaten their fill.

"Down below Riverside Park"
Frederick Seidel

So there are the rest of the verses. I'm not sure what to make of it yet.
Last edited by michael on Sun Jul 05, 2015 3:13 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: poems we like

Post by crystalball » Sun Jul 12, 2015 9:01 pm

Hmm, that really doesn't deliver on its opening stanza's promise, does it? There are some lovely moments there but also too many shockers. He seems to be trying to break up the lyricism with non-poetry on purpose, but he ends up with a middle part that's painfully cumbersome and pompous. I found it really hard work. Am I being harsh?

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Re: poems we like

Post by michael » Sat Jul 25, 2015 10:51 am

Well, it would have been better not to post the first verse separately since the poem turns out quite differently from the first verse, so that was misleading. I didn't realise quite how differently when I started out. Sorry about that.

There are things I like about it, the sound of the variation in the rhyme, "In the freezing cold snap of life", the way the part about going to parties just starts up, "Means it's seventy years ago", most of the matter of factness, the self awareness of the "Why does one write with such gloom and complain/About the joy of being alive?" verse, the obscurity of the last verse.

I'm not sure how I posted a poem with the line "The mirror opens and drools" in the "poems we like" thread though.

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Re: poems we like

Post by crystalball » Fri Aug 07, 2015 1:12 pm

'Gloaming' by Kathleen Jamie

We are flying, this summer's night, toward a brink, a wire-thin
rim of light. It swells as we descend, then illuminates the land
enough to let us name, by hill or river mouth, each township below.
This is the North, where people, the world perhaps likes to imagine,
hold a fish in one hand, in the other a candle.
I could settle for that. The plane shudders, then rolls to a standstill
at the far end of the runway. It's not day, this light we've entered,
but day is present at the negotiation. The sky's the still
pale grey of a heron, attending the tide-pools of the shore.

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Re: poems we like

Post by crystalball » Tue Sep 22, 2015 10:19 pm

How utterly Gerald Manley Hopkins is this? How utterly astounding?

'Foxes' by A B Jackson

A passion fuelled by foxes cannot last.
Vampires moan in sweet unmirrored bliss.
A skater’s joy could make a pond collapse.
Fox-love is a game of hit or miss.

I throw them chicken wings, rags of beef.
Porch lights will ignite when foxes run.
Our garden is a pool of disbelief.
Vermin have their holes in kingdom come.

The synaesthete sees colour in a word;
a tune is bitter almond, orange peel.
A fox’s nose is cleaner than a sword;
our kiss, like burning bibles on a wheel.

Hail, as foxes gnaw their daily bread,
the winter pavement serving as a dish.
We snuffle out our boundaries in bed.
Oh speed me, Christ, another night like this.

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Re: poems we like

Post by humblebee » Wed Sep 23, 2015 12:55 am

It's great. He's great. The end-stopped lines are amazing. It's all amazing.

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Re: poems we like

Post by crystalball » Wed Nov 25, 2015 12:53 pm

Is this allowed? Oh, I don't care. Here.

Image

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Re: poems we like

Post by crystalball » Thu Dec 10, 2015 2:24 pm

Posting on this thread all the time is about the only thing in my life I don't feel the need to constantly apologise for.

This is from over 100 years ago:

'The Matrix' by Amy Lowell

Goaded and harassed in the factory
That tears our life up into bits of days
Ticked off upon a clock which never stays,
Shredding our portion of Eternity,
We break away at last, and steal the key
Which hides a world empty of hours; ways
Of space unroll, and Heaven overlays
The leafy, sun-lit earth of Fantasy.
Beyond the ilex shadow glares the sun,
Scorching against the blue flame of the sky.
Brown lily-pads lie heavy and supine
Within a granite basin, under one
The bronze-gold glimmer of a carp; and I
Reach out my hand and pluck a nectarine.

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Re: poems we like

Post by michael » Sat Feb 13, 2016 5:53 am

Interesting article here about John Berryman and The Dream Songs sequence of poems. I like its mix of talk about biography and context and sound and structure.

I've got an edition of The Dream Songs out of the library but I haven't quite got into it yet.

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