Wednesday, May 13, 2009

a spring poem

Shoes in grass
In the tall tall order of all things unsaid, unsung

A yellowness in a purple tongue,
Licking the blades of green, green, green

As a pitcher pouring years of hydrating pickles into the mouths of spring-red robins
On the tails of mid-morning foxes
Smiles guile the snails along their salty paths

When in the event of a pollen explosion
(a new feat for dandelion war generals)
Pollinating pistols dive into the stream
With any luck the tadpoles will find out

A guilty rabbit
Chopping carrots in the back of his Peter trailer
With the daily farmer report playing tunes of his bunnyhood
In a haze of lettuce leaves and sugar beets,
His reason knocks his feet off edge and into a pool of yogurt
The green bugs of envy avalanche their vision

A true buzzing picker of noses can’t laugh without a pitcher of red nectar at her feet
See the beach gulls
Trying out their new sunglasses
On the waves

A crab in the sand
A scuttle towards a beer bottle
When a throttle thrust overtopples the crab’s peace

A freedom in the art of believing
Freedom to believe in the soul of wanting
Along a mudskipper’s spine
Endeared by my kitchen shears
All for a new patch of sorrel and mint

Children gather
A truck of mindless tasty things barricades the entrance to the park
Leading in no direction but down the esophageal path

Somewhere I have never travelled
A coquille st-jacques awaits in shallots and butter
The whiteness
A table
Champagne bubbles singing their aria in ¾ time
Fluttering by, the waiter brings seconds

Slow sights
Pretty pictures
A backyard fight
Tossed t-shirts of Tuesday night

What a face
Linking noses
Sprouting arguments in prose
Climaxing in ripped pantyhose

1 comment:

Barbara Lorraine said...

First, two recommendations. Definitely check out the XTC album Skylarking, which reminds me somewhat of your style, and more so of you in particular. And stylistically this book isn't as relevant to my comments about your poem, but it's a beautifully-crafted retelling of a myth about the monster Geryon, and I think it's up your alley. Seriously Fee, I don't know how you can go through life without reading Ann Carson's "Autobiography of Red." Do it for Johnny. (and by Johnny I mean me.)

Reading your poetry is, for me, as daunting as reading Paul Muldoon: "oh my God that was awesome, but what the hell can I say? My words by comparison are dross." Your descriptions are, without a doubt, mercifully unique, which is not an effect a lot of poets can pull off--they'll tend to try too hard and leave us with overworked weirdness. The active energy of the pollen explosion is massive (although I think you'd do well to expand on the tadpoles, because I'd love to hear what they're experiencing on your fine spring day), and while I feel the use of the hydrating pickles is a bit outta left field in terms of relevance, it's nonetheless some pretty damn effective imagery.

The "true buzzing her feet" section is slightly muddy, and I think you either need to edit for clarity, or push it a little more in terms of strangeness. And given the fantastic absurdity of the poem, the beach section with the gulls and the crab seems underdressed by comparison, especially when you follow up with the rhythmic/lyrical tightness of the endearment of the mudskipper's spine by the shears.

Also, I love the last two stanzas, so much that I think they belong to themselves and not to this poem. As a standalone piece those eight lines are perfect, and without them, the focus of the spring poem tightens to the wildly described, very specific moments of earlier on.

My two cents. I hope you'll continue to post more poems, Fee, because I've always loved your work!