Monthly Archives: December 2014

Descriptive Hollowness

“My songs are written with the kettle drums in mind / a touch of any anxious color…with a melodic purring line of descriptive hollowness”

–Bob Dylan

Leave it to Dylan to describe his art better than anyone else.

Half Truths

About poetry we can only utter half truths.

–Theodore Roethke

Neruda on the Poet’s Pact

“Poetry is a deep inner calling in man; from it came liturgy, the psalms, and also the content of religions. The poet confronted nature’s phenomena and in the early ages called himself a priest, to safeguard his vocation. . . . Today’s social poet is still a member of the earliest order of priests. In the old days he made his pact with the darkness, and now he must interpret the light.”

–Pablo Neruda

A Distant Echo Before Nightfall

The prone Diogenes asks Alexander the Great
to move out of his sunlight, his testicles sagging
and visible, stained with last night’s glorious wine drunk.

As a bee dances first before it dies for its queen,
so the nuclear sunset looks glorious before it reaches you.

Alexander laughs and moves to one side.
An irradiated lily puts its blossoms away for a time
when the air is safe to perfume again.