Monday, March 8, 2021

POETS WHO SLEEP #41 ~




P O E T S     W H O     S L E E P


______________________



                                           drawn & scribed by Bob Arnold


Sunday, March 7, 2021

HAPPY BIRTHDAY! JOHN McPHEE ~

 



John McPhee poses for a portrait in his office at Princeton University in Princeton, N.J. Bryan Anselm—Redux for TIME 


H A P P Y      B I R T H D A Y

J O H N     M C P H E E

March 8, 1931







ANCIENT BASEBALL ~

 



The lively spirit and busy fingers of

Alfred Jarry and Rube Goldberg live-on

to this day out of the Catskills of New York

and its very own Mikhail Horowitz via

Ancient Baseball, where Mikhail has long worked

his workshop of collages. No easy-street photoshoppy

stuff here. Each collage from baseball land, includng

"Babe (Ruth) in the Manger" were done with old-school

finesse — hand wrought cut & paste w/scissors,

straight-edge razors please, and whiff the

room with paper cement.

Ah, it does make a style and grace.


[ BA ]



_________


__________

Alte Books

30 Old Whitfield Road

Accord, New York

12404




Friday, March 5, 2021

RE-READING ASHA BANDELE ~

 




absence in the palms of my hands

                                                                    for audre lorde



i will eat the last signs of my weakness

remove the scars of childhood wars


i made you this promise as

humble as mary washing the feet of her savior


it was an unsteady may afternoon &

we were standing in the doorway of the home you had adopted

you let me there with

your head raised and still dreadlocked walking

toward the beginnings of your death

i didn't say i'd never take the chemo you told me

& though i know we must have spoken after this day

these are the last words i ever remember hearing from

you


audre

i learned to face the complexity of living watching you

face the complexity of dying

                never do it on your knees never do it with your back turned

                never do it with your eyes

low


i learned dialectics watching you at war

a defiant soldier for peace against the serenade of violence

inside & outside

your body                      a mighty oak refusing

to be scorched in silence


these days

in the face of necessity battles i know i must

never forget the warnings of my woman's flesh

nor lose the terror that keeps me brave*

but this morning your memory informs my tears

thick & isolated

unable to rest

it has been two years now but

death does not know time and


your absence aches in the palms of my hands

but i am also angry


i curse the disease because cancer is not natural

nor the act of an unforgiving God

crossing the world we once shared

i see

poison passed off as food   water   air   as

good earth upon which we may live or clear out

the next rainforest to make room for a grinning clown

& hamburger stand


the   whole   world

is being nourished on big macs & radon

staring westward at hollywood for daily salvation

& we do not understand our 5 year olds

when their eyes melt

& they do not scream only

shrug


in the solitude of my writing i place

your poetry around me like a makeshift altar

& pray my generation of poet-historians

will abandon any urge toward the mirage of relevance created 'cause

WE BLEW UP THE SPOT YO!

in the urgent hour of now

we need stories beyond shock value whose

focus is transformation

or at least the prayer that

we will write no words we will not want spoken out of

the mouths of our children


that we will owe nothing we cannot repay.*



*from "Solstice" by Audre Lorde (in Black Unicorn)


__________________________________

absence in the palms of my hands

asha bandele

Harlem River Press, 1996






Wednesday, March 3, 2021

RE-READING FERRUCCIO BRUGNARO ~

 





We Don't Want Bosses, Period



We don't want bosses of any kind,

                                 period.

They've already splashed around

                       in our blood,

already feasted plenty

                              on our lives.

Stop asking us so many questions.

Look at our injuries

             the damage done to peasants

                                    and miners.

We've gotta yank this plant out of the world

                           once and for always.

Don't ask anything else of us. We've really

                                  made up our guts.

We don't want bosses

because they're

                           the same as ever;

because they want the land

                    all for themselves,

because they never stop

                   robbing, trampling

and killing, killing

day and night under every kind of sky.



_________________________

translated by Jack Hirschman from the Italian

Ferruccio Brugnaro

FIST OF SUN

Curbstone Press, 1998


Ferruccio Brugnaro worked for 30 years —

most of his adult life — in an industrial park of

chemical factories in the Porto Marghera district of Venice.

Well known as a worker-poet he shared his poems for years,

printed in mimeo format, to workers at the factory and in many

schools he visited. Poet & translator Jack Hirschman chose for this

collection from three previous books by Brugnaro: We Must Want To,

 The Silence Doesn't Rule and The Clear Stars of These Nights.

Born in Mestre Italy in 1936, Ferruccio Brugnaro has retired from

the factory shift and now devotes his full-time to writing.


[ BA ]







Monday, March 1, 2021

POETS WHO SLEEP #40 ~



P O E T S     W H O     S L E E P


______________________



                                           drawn & scribed by Bob Arnold



Sunday, February 28, 2021

JANE MEAD ~

 





Seventy Feet From 

The Magnolia Blossom



there is an ant.


He is carrying

a heavy load —


We should help him.




______________________


Jane Mead (1958~-2019)

The Usable Field

Alice James Books

2008