Friday, July 11, 2014

i love this poem

Slowly in Prayer

 
Matthew Lippman
To be thankful for the Starbucks lady, Lucy,
who is pissed at me for asking too many questions
about my damn phone app
is one thing.
To be thankful for my wife plastering my face to the bathroom floor
with pancake batter
for missing the bus
is another thing.
I tried to be thankful for my eyes this morning
even though one of them is filled with puss
and the other with marigold juice.
Marigold juice is the stuff that comes from the flower
when you put it between your palms and rub, slowly in prayer,
even though nothing comes out.
It’s the imagined juice of God,
the thing you can’t see when you are not being thankful.
I try to be thankful for the lack of energy that is my laziness
and my lonely best friend with no wife and children
knowing I am as lonely as he
with one wife and two daughters.
Sometimes we travel five minutes to the pier in Red Hook
and it takes hours in our loneliness to know, in our thankfulness,
that if we held hands it’d be a quiet romance for the ages.
I’ll admit, I’m thankful for Justin Timberlake
because he’s better than Beethoven
and my friend Aaron
who lived in the woods with an axe and never used it once.
I try hard to forget love,
to abandon love,
so that one day I will actually be able to love.
Until then, I am thankful that Lucy wanted to spit in my coffee,
or imagined that she did,
and thanked her profusely
for showing me which buttons to push
and how to do it, with just the right amount of pressure,
the whole tips of all my fingers dancing like stars
through the blackness
of a mocha latte, black.
 
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Copyright @ 2014 by Matthew Lippman. Used with permission of the author.

About This Poem

 
“‘Slowly in Prayer’ was written one Sunday morning at Starbucks. The woman who took my order was angry, not at me, but at something, and it was all over her face and in her tone of voice. When I sat down I tried to write myself out of my own anger and into a more beautiful, generous, and, dare I say, sweeter place, so I could move on with my morning.”
—Matthew Lippman

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

sounds about right

Our Daily Becoming


by Adam Clay


Like animals moving daily
through the same open field,
it should be easier to distinguish
light from dark, fabrications

from memory, rain on a sliver
of grass from dew appearing
overnight. In these moments
of desperation, a sentence

serves as a halo, the moon
hidden so the stars eclipse
our daily becoming. You think
it should be easier to define

one’s path, but with the clouds
gathering around our feet,
there’s no sense in retracing
where we’ve been or where

your tired body will carry you.
Eventually the birds become
confused and inevitable. Even our
infinite knowledge of the forecast

might make us more vulnerable
than we would be in drawn-out
ignorance. To the sun
all weeds eventually rise up.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Yes

I Want to Write Something So Simply

by Mary Oliver, from Evidence

I want to write something
so simply
about love
or about pain
that even
as you are reading
you feel it
and as you read
you keep feeling it
and though it be my story
it will be common,
though it be singular
it will be known to you
so that by the end
you will think—
no, you will realize—
that it was all the while
yourself arranging the words,
that it was all the time
words that you yourself
out of your own heart
had been saying.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Sad, but also kind of awesome...

Learning to Read
Franz Wright

If I had to look up every fifth or sixth word
so what. I looked them up.
I had nowhere important to be.

My father was unavailable, and my mother
looked like she was about to break,
and not into blossom, each time I spoke.

My favorite was The Iliad. True,
I had trouble pronouncing the names;
but when was I going to pronounce them, and

to whom?
My stepfather maybe?
Number one, he could barely speak English -

two, he had sufficient cause
to smirk or attack
without prompting from me.

Loneliness boredom and fear
my motivation
fiercely fueled.

I get down on my knees and thank God for them.

Du Fu, the Psalms, Whitman, Rilke.
Life has taught me
to understand books.


____
A window onto the childhood of Franz Wright, who turned sixty last year and won the Pulitzer Prize in 2005 for Walking to Martha's Vineyard. This poem appears in F, his newest collection.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Scott's is celebrating Spring!

Welcome Spring by taking advantage of my limited-run Print Sale! “A Warm Spring Rain” is on sale this week – offering 25 signed prints at $75.00 each, sized 12x18. Email me at scottsnyderphotography@gmail.com to order by Sunday, April 6. Feel free to share this post if you like. ~Scott Snyder


Thursday, March 27, 2014

Lovely

by Scott Snyder, www.scottsnyderphotography.com



If the ocean had a mouth

by Marie-Elizabeth Mali


I'd lean close, my ear
to her whisper and roar,
her tongue scattered
with stars.

She'd belt her brassy voice
over the waves' backbeat.
No one sings better than her.

Would she ever bite
the inside of her cheek?

Would she yell at the moon
to quit tugging at her hem,
or would she whistle, drop
her blue dress and shimmy
through space to cleave
to that shimmer?

What did she mean to say
that morning she spit out
the emaciated whale
wearing a net for a corset?

All this emptying
on the sand. Eyeless
shrimp. Oiled pelicans.

Within her jaws the coral forests,
glittering fish, waves like teeth,
her hungry mortal brine.
Copyright © 2014 by Marie-Elizabeth Mali. Used with permission of the author.

About This Poem 


"As an underwater photographer one of the things I love most about being in the ocean is interacting with a world that has nothing to do with me, a world with its own passions, social structures, dangers. The awareness that we humans are harming that world is always with me so I wondered what the ocean might say if given a chance."

--Marie-Elizabeth Mali