Tuesday, July 13, 2010

On Getting Lost [in a book]

It's been ages since I last got lost in a book. There are only a handful of novels that have so thoroughly and completely transported me to another place, another time, another life: The World According to Garp, To Kill a Mockingbird, The Virgin Suicides, The Secret Garden, The Hours*.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Letters to Strangers

Letter from a Stranger
for Thomas James

Who emptied your wine on cold winter day?
Jason in the garden one fog-smeared morn?
Perhaps the broken sirens of mongrels
Shaken into madness did seal your fate
While colors of innocence dripped decay.

The world masked you in anemic thistle’s
Trapped reflections—final turn of the screw.
Your body holding shape, genius intact,
Out of your mind, thoughts of darkness would pour.
In painted box a precious object shut.

An hour, a day, a January more
Inside you I have lived in keen darkness
Feeling the slow slug crawl through gray matter.
It is a stranger who has poured your flask,
But lonely stranger to You I am not.

Friday, July 9, 2010

How to move a stone--or anything else heavily weighing

1. Find your stones: Seems pretty simple, you have something to move, a couch, an armoire, a futon, a cat, your in-laws, or maybe just some words--these are usually dug in pretty tight, but get them out; you'll feel better. What does one do with a field full of words?

In the beginning was the word

I've wanted to start a literary journal for quite some time now, but it never seemed to be within the realm of possibility. A journal doesn't just rise up out of nowhere; it takes vision, it takes time, it takes connections, it takes money. I, unfortunately, am lacking in just about all of those areas. And so I relegated "start a journal" to the dusty "things to do when I retire or win the lottery" repository in the back of my brain, along with pipe dreams like "open a book store/coffee house in Door County." Never mind that I don't drink coffee--that's not the point...or maybe that's exactly the point: it's a list of the unlikely. Don't we all keep a mental tally of the things we say we'd like to do but don't ever expect to achieve?