Sunday, February 21, 2010

Kris took the shower curtain down so he could paint the bathroom pink

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Mosquito by Alex Lemon

I enjoyed Alex Lemon's Mosquito. His book deals a lot with illness, whether it is his own or his grandfather's. Even the love poems in this book have a bit of sickness in them. The poems feel like they are more alive in a way because the speaker in the poems doesn't take life for granted.

I think this book is something everyone can relate to because we all have or will have to deal with serious illness. It is authentic in the way it portrays a life trying to be normal and day to day while having something scary and serious always looming.

I don't mind that Lemon doesn't spell everything out in his poems. He leads the reader through the poetry with beautiful wordplay and lovely phrases that almost reveal what is going on.

My favorites from the book:
MRI

Ashtray

Portrait My Mother Painted from My Mugshot

Kinematics (the second poem after the interview, which is an interesting interview, btw)

Monday, February 15, 2010

Oh no!

The problem with having a cat food can cover shaped like a cat face is you feel awful when you accidentally tear off an ear.



(After this photo was taken, I accidentally tore off the other ear! The purple cat doesn't have any ears now!)

Saturday, February 13, 2010

blessing the boats by Lucille Clifton

(at St. Mary's)

may the tide
that is entering even now
the lip of our understanding
carry you out
beyond the face of fear
may you kiss
the wind then turn from it
certain that it will
love your back may you
open your eyes to water
water waving forever
and may you in your innocence
sail through this to that

Friday, February 12, 2010

I pass this road all the time, and it always makes me sad



She would be 78 today.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Circle by Victoria Chang

Victoria Chang's book Circle is separated into three different sections: "on quitting," "five year plan," and "limits." All the sections were good, but I really liked the section on quitting, which were about the dark side of love/relationships. I felt like those poems were more emotionally charged. I especially loved when The Man in the White Truck, a man that the speaker was having an affair with, shows up in some of the poems. He has a poem about him with "The Man in the White Truck" as the title, and then he appears in a few other poems. It was like seeing a recurring character in a tv show. It was fun to see him, and get more information about their relationship in other poems.

Chang had a lot of historical women in her poems, and I liked seeing how women dealt with thier lives in other time periods.

Some of the other poems in the book, while well-constructed, and beautiful, were a little disconnected, emotionally.

I read a lot of Chang's poetry online, and really loved just about all of it. I picked up her second book Salvinia Molesta. I am looking forward to reading it because I suspect those poems will be closer to the ones I've been reading online than to the ones in her first book.

My favorite poems in the book:

The Man in the White Truck

Holiday Parties

Seven Changs

Seven Reasons for Divorce

Monday, February 08, 2010

The best part of this photo? I am accidentally holding the program with my pinky up!

I read at a Langston Hughes tribute reading in Connecticut this weekend. It was held at the really nice Mystic Arts Center. There was a great exhibit there by Mundy Hepburn, a luminous glass artist. When you put your hand near the sculpture, the high frequency static electricity makes the glowing gas inside move towards your hand. Gorgeous stuff!

Friday, February 05, 2010

Siste Viator by Sarah Manguso

I hated the first poem in this collection: "Nothing." I don't like poems that are overly vague, and I thought I was going to have to trudge through a whole book of air. The beginning of this book was rough, but the poems got much better.

I didn't like the longer poems in the book, they were sort of rambling and I kept losing focus when I read them. The shorter poems were better. They were still a bit abstract, but they are full of images and humor.

I didn't understand Manguso's line and stanza breaks in the longer poems, the lines are very long, and it seems like they break in random spots. The shorter ones were either one stanza, or if there were stanza breaks, they were more organized.

The titles were either one word like "Nothing" or "Burning," or they were interesting titles like "The Only Thing to Pray for is Fire."

Although I felt like I was being pulled back and forth between things I liked and disliked, it was an enjoyable read, overall. The majority were great poems. Siste Viator made a bad first impression and spent the whole book trying to win me over (it did).

My favorite poems in the book:

Address to an Absent Lover

Jupiter Has 61 Moons

Burning

Hand Model