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SteveParker Profile
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passing strange food mouth to mouth


being in love no—not that the wind
doesn't still when you step outside

(someone has their hands over your mouth
in your mouth around your head someone
holds you as you fade)


like you were broken into saccades
like they had sliced up your senses

the trees harbour dark things
the night is a wild white train driving
into its own abdomen
—digital craqelure shatters above

rains down glass and ice
see here is your face your thousand faces
in the rain memory
wake here at nightfall
where the hares dance dusk dawn grasp
with tiny hands we come running again
to your arms hold me hold me unbreathing
in the shallow brown water

below us shapes flick
not so in love that you wouldn't know it
nor so we fade
as the barking of dogs
over forest rides love is a mouthful
of pine needles the feel of a wet pelt
the stench of the other
—blood in the snow
hold me there beneath the snow

until the choirs have passed by
—again at dawn the thing on the bedhead watches
every day now it grows more vivid

soon it will speak

in the empty house
that no one will approach
.
Dec/23/2009, 8:44 pm Link to this post Send Email to SteveParker   Send PM to SteveParker
 
Terreson Profile
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Re: passing strange food mouth to mouth


First reading. Am I taking in line rhythm correctly enough to get a clipped, staccato beat? Man, I would love to get the poem on my ear! Will be back.

Tere
Dec/24/2009, 1:16 am Link to this post Send Email to Terreson   Send PM to Terreson
 
SteveParker Profile
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Re: passing strange food mouth to mouth


I'm going to try to get some readings stuck up on Youtube over Xmas. If so I'll post a link to this one. Thanks for having a look.

Steve.
Dec/24/2009, 6:41 am Link to this post Send Email to SteveParker   Send PM to SteveParker
 
Zakzzz5 Profile
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Re: passing strange food mouth to mouth


Steve,

I can't help but look at his in relation to your comments on Terreson's recent green girl poem (A Movable Feast) wherein you ask for multiple perspectives. I'm guessing that that is what is happening here (a skeptic would wonder if it isn't the same narrator at the core simply hitting it from different sides). The problem with this type of poem is that most of the time people simply make general statements and never try to nail down what the poem is about, except in very, very general terms. I went back to TCP to review the comments there, and that is pretty much what happened there. Have also talked somewhat about this with Jules where I told him several people there have taught me (to a limited degree) how to speak to this "type" of poem. That is, to a type of poem that isn't traditional narrative, set up in a traditional structure. Yes, I know, all of these words themselves can be parsed. For me, looking at a poem like this, versus a more traditional, more narrative style poem, is like looking at portrait painting or even at Impressionistic painting versus a Pollock.

Generally speaking, this poem doesn't give me a warm, fuzzy feeling. It talks of fading, of dark things, of unbreathing, of blood in the snow, of an empty house. But I see no consistent pattern. I'm left wrestling for a form I can see. Though I get glimpses, I don't get a clear direction from this. So for me this poem is not quite up to par with your other powerful poetry, which I've admired very much. Zak

quote:

SteveParker wrote:

being in love no—not that the wind
doesn't still when you step outside

(someone has their hands over your mouth
in your mouth around your head someone
holds you as you fade)


like you were broken into saccades
like they had sliced up your senses

the trees harbour dark things
the night is a wild white train driving
into its own abdomen
—digital craqelure shatters above

rains down glass and ice
see here is your face your thousand faces
in the rain memory
wake here at nightfall
where the hares dance dusk dawn grasp
with tiny hands we come running again
to your arms hold me hold me unbreathing
in the shallow brown water

below us shapes flick
not so in love that you wouldn't know it
nor so we fade
as the barking of dogs
over forest rides love is a mouthful
of pine needles the feel of a wet pelt
the stench of the other
—blood in the snow
hold me there beneath the snow

until the choirs have passed by
—again at dawn the thing on the bedhead watches
every day now it grows more vivid

soon it will speak

in the empty house
that no one will approach
.





Last edited by Zakzzz5, Dec/24/2009, 4:32 pm
Dec/24/2009, 6:53 am Link to this post Send Email to Zakzzz5   Send PM to Zakzzz5
 
Terreson Profile
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Re: passing strange food mouth to mouth


A YouTube link to a reading would be a treat.

Tere
Dec/24/2009, 3:37 pm Link to this post Send Email to Terreson   Send PM to Terreson
 
Terreson Profile
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Re: passing strange food mouth to mouth


Here is my approach to the poem. By way of Rimbaud's famous letter of May 15, 1871. I thought about the letter last night. But then I thought perhaps not, perhaps there is no fit to the poem. Today I read the poem again and come to this couplet:

~like you were broken into saccades
like they had sliced up your senses~

L2 was my first tangible clue to the fit. But I had to look up the definition of saccade. And I don't think I am off base. From Rimbaud's letter:

~A Poet makes himself a visionary through a long, boundless, and systemitized disorganization of all the senses. All forms of love, of suffering, of madness; he searches himself, he exhausts within himself all poisons, and preserves their quintessences. Unspeakable torment, where he will need the greatest faith, a superhuman strength, where he becomes among all men the great invalid, the great criminal, the great accursed - and the Supreme Scientist.~

And this: ~A language must be found; besides, all speech being idea, a time of universal language will come.~

And finally this: ~This language will be of the soul, for the soul, and will include everything: perfumes, sounds, colors, thought grappling with thought.~

So Steveman this is my approach to your poem. A disorganization of all the senses out of which the poem looks to discover new senses and, therefore, a language authentic enough to tell us what the senses comprehend; which, when weighed, is the holy grail of poetry in the first place.

Please understand I am not trying to fit the poem to a program. But with Rimbaud's objectives in mind your poem becomes intelligible. And I get the suffering and the loss and the longing it looks to body out. I also get a depth experience the poem is wanting to plumb. I think I even get the syntax and the rhythm which strikes me as based on each self-enclosed clause following each other in succession.

This is a strong poem. I am not sure what doesn't work about it yet, if anything. For that I need more familiarity in order to get your intentions. Good stuff.

Tere
Dec/24/2009, 4:50 pm Link to this post Send Email to Terreson   Send PM to Terreson
 
SteveParker Profile
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Re: passing strange food mouth to mouth


Zak and Tere, many thanks for your comments. I do appreciate anyone taking the time. I wrote this one because someone reckoned everything I wrote included some disaster, and challenged me to write a love poem with no disaster in it. Of course I didn't manage it. My feeling was that I would look at the idea of 'love', and then try to pin down everything that occurred as I did so so it would be a sort of slice through that moment. I still quite like it, but I probably won't by next week. My poetry fades pretty fast for me. Zak, there's no direction here as it's all supposed to be in one instant of present time. Tere, I like the idea of using Rimbaud to decode stuff. I get that you aren't fitting it to a formula, but I see what you're doing there too. It's an overly flattering connection of course, so I won't grow any hubris from the association. But it's an interesting device to approach with.

Thanks both for taking a look.

Steve.
Dec/24/2009, 5:04 pm Link to this post Send Email to SteveParker   Send PM to SteveParker
 
dmehl808 Profile
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Re: passing strange food mouth to mouth


Mainly I just want to say this is a stronger tighter better piece of yours, Steve--wanted to offer up that vote.

I feel like I can follow it, especially knowing the dare and then your response.

It's interesting how you use italics to represent either dream states or other's voices intruding into the collage of imagery circling around a theme.

a drowning person either being shut up, smothered, or drowned--the trainwreck like a snake eating its own tail, the observational pullback of digitalization and that being shattered, the wolves on the hunt, the creature like death becoming more real while others around you that you care about ephemeral fade. It is a bit nightmarish--but not unbeautiful--the thousand faces in the rain memory. all of it becoming a house that no one will approach--ostracism, the monstrous--quarantined or unclean, outside.

The device of using a triplet in the title:

the idiom of passing strange to mean transitory and bizarre, food as sustenance and life, mouth to mouth as a source of first aid resuscitation but also kissing.

Your attempt at a love poem is disturbing and hellish but no doubt a reflection however accurate of experience, memory and dream. Rimbaud and Poe and maybe Artaud are good keys to reading this work, but I would find this more readable, contemporary, alive.

I do believe you sidestepped the assignment, and think you should keep trying--write a series of attempts. Poetry is often a way to chew through the things that bother us and jiggle around sharpedged inside us--we don't usually write poetry when we're smiling content. cummings seemed to be able to.

This is working but so dark and melancholy, makes me want to tell you a really good joke.
Dec/25/2009, 5:07 pm Link to this post Send Email to dmehl808   Send PM to dmehl808
 
SteveParker Profile
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Re: passing strange food mouth to mouth


Dave, thanks for your comments. I'll come back about it, but right now I just want to say that I think you just wrote a pretty interesting poem here:

a drowning person either being shut up, smothered, or drowned--the trainwreck like a snake eating its own tail, the observational pullback of digitalization and that being shattered, the wolves on the hunt, the creature like death becoming more real while others around you that you care about ephemeral fade. It is a bit nightmarish--but not unbeautiful--the thousand faces in the rain memory. all of it becoming a house that no one will approach--ostracism, the monstrous--quarantined or unclean, outside.

The device of using a triplet in the title:

the idiom of passing strange to mean transitory and bizarre, food as sustenance and life, mouth to mouth as a source of first aid resuscitation but also kissing.

Your attempt at a love poem is disturbing and hellish


Steve.
Dec/25/2009, 5:50 pm Link to this post Send Email to SteveParker   Send PM to SteveParker
 
dmehl808 Profile
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Re: passing strange food mouth to mouth


well that's how I've felt about many of your emails to bobx. you've got a collection of prose poems there, bud. Did you know that?

regarding my critique as a poem--heh--maybe you're right, but if so, as a supposed synopsis/interp of your poem, it's a bit derivative and thus perhaps a collaboration?

Dec/25/2009, 9:00 pm Link to this post Send Email to dmehl808   Send PM to dmehl808
 
SteveParker Profile
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Re: passing strange food mouth to mouth


I'll take it as a collaboration then. We used to do collaborations just like that, me and Pam and Joe, where someone would write a thing, then the others would write stuff about it, then all of it would feed in to some eventual final poem.

You wanna make it a collaboration, I'm your man.

Cheers,

Steve.
Dec/25/2009, 10:11 pm Link to this post Send Email to SteveParker   Send PM to SteveParker
 
SteveParker Profile
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Re: passing strange food mouth to mouth


Terreson just now got me back into Artaud, though I confess to having him always open for the last few months. Anyway, this seems appropriate:

The organ had no midwife
But the shack crackled
And my mother was the landlady
Where I became involved

Doves of slender fire
Darted their fleecy flames
On the specious bosom
Where dreams bound me down

But later the bride split
The clear canvas membrane
Where the narrow solar tent
Imprisons all our frolics

Jaysus, now ain't that a poem crying out for a better translation?

Steve.
Dec/25/2009, 10:20 pm Link to this post Send Email to SteveParker   Send PM to SteveParker
 


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