WOODLANDERS BY BOB ARNOLD. LONGHOUSE PUBLISHERS, 2019, $15.95.
In the age of the tweet, you’d think there’d be a renaissance of the short-short poem. Yet there’s no sign of this, except for Bob Arnold. For decades he’s been creating evocative short poems, in the tradition of Cid Corman and Lorine Niedecker, making use of every word as only someone who works with wood or stone can do. And yet for decades he’s been ignored by the poetry cognoscenti, who all reviewers must bow down to three times a day. In this poem, even the title is put to use as if it were the first line: “I Saw Her Snow Tracks // from earlier in the day-- / I followed them to / where I am today.” In fifty years, if the planet survives, some scholar will “discover” the poetry of Bob Arnold.