Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Kali Mera Mora Mou: A Poem and a Place Should Be One

The province of the poem is the world.
When the sun rises, it rises in the poem
and when it sets darkness comes down
and the poem is dark .

It's strange how seductive the poem. I am trying to work on prose these days and everything I've ever learned comes back to the poem and the way those of us taken by it young and the throat, have to write so, so, so much prose just to get at its freaky little contours, the way it turns its corners, and its side-streets--they are the dangerous, magical places within it. It's as close to my awe for music as anything gets this--strangeness of rooms and staircases that is the poem.

This morning I walked to the bank--a mile and something from my place and it was all city, morning commuters and it was bustling and fragrant (onions grilling for some omelette, the vanillaness of waffles and the other smells human and bus and heavy), there were bikes and beautiful bicyclists spokes all spitting silver and so on, and there was a woman in the bus-stop cubicle on a cell phone "size don't matter" pause, laughter "oh, just something I pick up somewhere--but I don't believe it..." and the man at the bank that always makes me feel pretty even if I'm bedraggled from the walk (so muggy, so hot) and there's the line for coffee and the stand-up-and-say-good-morning coffee at the place next to Mojo. I loved the way that there were suits and little wonderful dresses and the click-click of high heels on the sidewalk (I thought of you, here) and a man sitting at the bus-stop alongside all of this polish, looking liberal arts professorial--long, grey ponytail, s & p beard, and reading a book while sitting on the sidewalk amongst all of these standing corporate or retail others. The small pigeon crouched by a building where someone had been leaving black sunflower seeds. All this was Columbus, Wednesday morning eight to nine a.m.

My meme: pick a town unglamorous (Brooklyn don't count, you mean thing) and write about it thoroughly. It can be a shorter poem (Degrees of Gray in Phillipsburg) or long like Paterson.


Steph R said...

I can write about my Sheepshead Bay part of Brooklyn. You'll see what I mean.

a-smk said...

I have consulted with the Gods of the Meme and indeed, Sheepshead Bay is (or for this one instance can be)allowed. It will require my personal inspection (post poem is fine) to occur in not more than three weeks from this writing.

Memo: You still suck Double-Hater of the Sister-Pants

Steph R said...

Don't worry--I just praised Ron Paul on my blog. People don't take me seriously there.

a-smk said...

There? Gal, if we took seriously anywhere, you'd be on a watch list...

(And not just your knockahs...though I've been meaning to say that with a pair like that, you might really, really consider public office. We can open a door or two wider for such nice credentials as a gal like you brings to the table. Can you bake apple pies? Do you think a good baby seal is a dead baby seal?