Wednesday, May 7, 2014

DENNIS SCHMITZ ~











Before the Coming of Winter



I counted the shapes

of my face on the dying

leaves


& was never cheated


choose my body too

empty the trees

onto their shadows


I want to be lean & tough

as a fir

& float across the snow

in green

like an enormous flame







 
The Fishing



 
the leaves were knee-

deep

around the elms &

inside the stream

the fish

flashed like spears

at the feathers

of the hook

dreaming of birds.

on the bank in the solid


air

the rod looked

like a spear in the sun

overhead a hawk

lay on top the air

like a leaf

lifted up by the stream








 
There Is No Sound




 
there is no sound in the halls

of a flower

the slow pollen snowing

even a bee will not whisper

when he enters

the sacred pollen

under his wings

blows to the walls







The Wounded Doe



steps out of the green

& yellow handsful

of leaves still on the trees

her soft ears


tremble like butterflies


berries are crushed

against her coat

            &

her wet breath crumbles

white

on her muzzle


all the bones of her body

are braced

against her teeth


& I am so close


I can hear the slow







Self-Portrait



I have ancestors of Dresden

the wet

bricks of Amsterdam

my head is round & the hair

polished black

I squint

& will not look into your face

the eye of a man

is round & the center opens

into his head



_________________

DENNIS SCHMITZ
We Weep for Our Strangeness (Big Table, 1969)







Dennis Schmitz lives in Sacramento and has been a teacher in colleges and universities most of his life. One of his students was Raymond Carver. Born and raised in Iowa in the month of the lion 1937. You'd be hard pressed to find a contemporary American poet so well respected by other poets and his books so little known.



    Books of Poems ~


    Animism (Oberlin College Press, 2014)
    The Truth Squad
(Copper Canyon Press, 2002)
    About Night: Selected and New Poems
(Oberlin College Press, 1993)
    Eden
(University of Illinois Press, 1989)
    Singing
(Ecco Press, 1985)
    String
(Ecco Press, 1980)
    Goodwill, Inc
(1976)
    Double Exposures
(1971)
    We Weep for Our Strangeness
(1969)





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