Willing

Standard

I am the witch to your witch finder,
I’m willing and ready to swing from your noose.
I know you are trouble, need no reminder,
You think me simple but I’m just obtuse.
Put me on trial now, don’t wait for Samhain,
That’s precious months away, and we’re here now.
You are the glacier, I’m the moraine,
Carried to palingenesis, like prized sow.

 

Advertisements

Poetry in the News

Standard

Hello 😊

Here’s your poetry in the news for today:

Dexter Booth and Why Children Need Poetry

Ex-soldier overcomes PTSD with moving modern-day war poetry

In poet John Keats’ letters, a man full of life just before he died

Ángel García Named Winner of CantoMundo Poetry Prize

‘Poetry is Me. It’s Inside Me. So, as Long as I exist, Poetry Will Exist.’

Author writes poetry books on Chamorro migration and identity

Instagram poetry

‘Poetry Gives the Reader Moral Strength’

Poem of the Week: how to get over [“be born: black…”], T’ai Freedom Ford

Standard
be born: black
as ants on a chicken bone black
as Nina Simone and Mahalia’s moan black
as rock pile smile and resilience black
as resistance and rhythm and Sonny’s blues black
as no shoes and dirt floors black
as whore and Hottentot foxtrot Lindy Hop
and Watusi pussy and pyramids black
as darkness under your eyelids black
between your legs black
as dregs of rum sugarcane summer
plums holyghost hum black
as bruised throat fieldholla wading in the shallow black
as ocean river stream creek running black
transparent translucent transatlantic slanted
shanties planted in red clay black
as funky chickens and chitlins and kinfolk sold away black
as auction block and slop and hip-hop and rock and roll
and chop shop and cop cars and parole and overseer
patrols and one drop rules and pools of blood black
as beige and good hair and sounding white and light-skindeded
and my grandmamma is Cherokee, Iroquois, Choctaw black
as pit bulls and lockjaw and rage and hoodies black
eyes and black-eyed peas peasy heads and loose tracks black
as trees and noose and hounds let loose in the night black
as fist and fight Sojourner and Nat Turner and righteousness black
as fuck and not giving a fuck mud-stuck and quicksand
quick hand hustle thigh muscle and hurdle black
as cotton and tobacco and indigo black
as wind and bad weather and feather
and tar and snap beans in mason jars black
as nigga please and hallelujah black
asses and black strap molasses and turn your black
back on audiences black
as banjo and djembe and porch and stoop and spooks
sitting by the door black
as roaches in front of company and lawn jockeys
and latchkey kids and high bids and spades and shittalk black
as cakewalk and second line and black
magic and tap dance, lapdance and alla that ass black
as jazz and juke and juju and spirit
disguised as harmonica spit black
as cast-iron skillets and grits and watermelon seeds
flitting from lips black
as tambourines hitting cornbread hips black
batons splitting lips and Martin Luther King, Jr.
boulevards and downtown beatdowns black
sit-ins and come-ups and oops upside yo’ heads
and we shall overcomes and get down on it black
get into it black let’s get it on and get it
while the getting is good black
as white hoods and backwood revivals black
as survival and Trayvon and Tyrone and Josephus
and amen and Moses and Jesus and getting over
black—

how to get over [“be born: black…”]

Pour

Standard

Empty yourself into me and I’ll not spill a drop.
No part of you will go to waste.
You would fill me, overflowing, with no desire or will to stop,
And I wouldn’t pull back: I am mesmerised, imagining your embrace.
You pace me, sparkle for sparkle, like gemstones, dazzling,
We glint in sunlight, moonlight, by candle flame,
No other sensation could ever replace the feeling you bring,
There is no way to enhance your steady frame.
While you contain all that’s good within,
I let it evaporate into thin air, unable to maintain a grasp,
And I do not know how to tell which is the greater sin –
Letting go, or clenching hard, desperately trying to make it last.
Both so fragile, at risk from sudden moves, but you
With so much more within to lose than I.
Should we fall, we’d both shatter, swept away, no way to undo
What is done. No way to reason, fix or gravity defy.
But you know, sometimes, some things in life are worth the risk.
To let something in is all you can do to recover
From past pains and sorrows. It’s worth it, this,
This giving of yourself to seek out what’s good in life to discover.
So, give in, give yourself and of yourself to me.
My assurance of full acceptance of all that is yours
Is all I can give you until then, until, finally,
You let go, release, and into me all yourself pour.

Favourite Poet: Don Paterson – Why Do You Stay Up So Late?

Standard
I’ll tell you, if you really want to know:
remember that day you lost two years ago
at the rockpool where you sat and played the jeweler
with all those stones you’d stolen from the shore?
Most of them went dark and nothing more,
but sometimes one would blink the secret color
it had locked up somewhere in its stony sleep.
This is how you knew the ones to keep.
So I collect the dull things of the day
in which I see some possibility
but which are dead and which have the surprise
I don’t know, and I’ve no pool to help me tell—
so I look at them and look at them until
one thing makes a mirror in my eyes
then I paint it with the tear to make it bright.
This is why I sit up through the night.
This was my first introduction to Don Paterson’s work and still a firm favourite, the imagery for me is more than about just that sense of introspection or consideration of mundane things and savouring things from them that I get from this, but also of creating a picture of a solitary figure sat – by firelight, because who doesn’t love a flickering flame – thinking their day over and trying to find some good.

Romance

Standard

Romance is dead.
He died a long while ago at the end of a blade
That carved deep into his skin and left his foolish heart flayed.

Romance is dead.
Immortalised in verse and token gestures of the heart.
A mocking caricature of mortal fervour turned art.

Romance is dead.
Do not disturb his condign slumber. Instead,
Heed the warnings on his scarred corpse, worn from heart to head.

Romance is dead.
Reanimation through the toils of a lively imagination will, at most,
Breathe life into a ghastly imitation or gallus emulation; a ghost.

Romance is dead.
The fires are out. Their embers cannot be stoked.
Let them crumble to ash and soot, no wistful memories evoke.

Romance is dead.
May he rest in peace.

Romance