Category: Passages

By Pablo Neruda

He still loves her, I think. But only sometimes. The last two lines seem a little harsh, but make me question if this poem was a response to the woman’s reappearance in his life. Tonight I can write the saddest lines. Write, for example, “The night is shattered and the blue stars shiver in the […]

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Charlie Brown Had a Pet Parrot Named Jocko

TIL: Charlie Brown briefly had a pet parrot named JOCKO. I cannot find mention of JOCKO in any of the Peanuts encyclopediæ, or anywhere else for that matter. This strip was not actually penned by Charles Schulz, but that does not make it an outright counterfeit. Schulz supervised artwork and production of a series of books […]

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A Note To John Yang, from Russ Perry

Some years ago I commenced, with great enthusiasm, a collection of photos capturing images of the dead as seen in what are known as “Sepulchral Portraits” on tombstones at Calvary and other New York City cemeteries, including Mt. Zion, St. Michael’s, and Mt. Olivet. The more I pursued this endeavor the more I found myself […]

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Found: Sickness

I found this unsigned note inside a used book that I bought today. The book is I Went To College And It Was Okay, a Collection of Jim’s Journal Cartoons by Jim. Sickness You can never reach a comfortable position when you are sick. Your back rakes with heat and your head weighs down your […]

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Crazy Weather, by JA

It’s this crazy weather we’ve been having: Falling forward one minute, lying down the next Among the loose grasses and soft, white, nameless flowers. People have been making a garment out of it, Stitching the white lilacs together with lightning At some anonymous crossroads. The sky calls To the deaf earth. The proverbial disarray Of […]

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Death in the World

By Pablo Neruda Death kept dispatching and reaping its tribute in sites and tombs: man with dagger or with pocket, at noon or in the nocturnal light, hoped to kill, kept killing, kept burying beings and branches, murdering and devouring corpses. He prepared his nets, wrung dry, bled white, departed in the morning smelling blood […]

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Elizabeth Jennings

My memories of nights spent pacing the silent suburban streets of Florida were complemented today when I opened a book of Elizabeth Jennings poems and found Curtains Undrawn. This work describes the poet’s times spent catching near-voyeuristic glimpses of “modest lives”. Curtains Undrawn Looking in windows down a night-time street In Winter, I don’t feel […]

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Foreboding

A breeze off the lake–petal-shaped Luna-park effects avoid the teasing outline Of where we would be if we were here. Bombed out of our minds, I think The way here is too close, too packed With surges of feeling. It can’t be. The wipeout occurs first at the center, now around the edges. A big […]

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Lies

Mind’s Heart Mind’s heart, it mustbe that sometruth lies lockedin you. Or else, lies, alllies, and no mantrue enough to knowthe difference. Robert Creeley

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always

Still glinting wings; the dull-red lacquer head Lifted from its socket, turned machanically This way and that, like a wristwatch being wound, As if there would always be time . . . From The House Fly, by Robert Merrill

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Black Zodiac

There is a solitude about Sunday afternoons In small towns, surrounded by all that’s familiar And of necessity dear, That chills us on hot days, like today, unto the grave, When the sun is a tongued wafer behind the clouds, out of sight, And wind chords work through the loose-roofed yard sheds, a celestial music […]

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where

typing in the dark, in my new room of self-exile. i like this. a small room, well appointed, a clean floor on which to write, a window i can open or close, endless music at my disposal, a neat row of freshly purchased books on the table, and  a strict and serious seat on which […]

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Buk

big tears, each one the size of your bastard hearts,
flowing down

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Passage of passages

Of course the point of Passages is that I copied them for a reason. Sometimes it is safe to do so but why let them lie there, dumb museum pieces, listless zoo creatures, captured. I am guilty of that since youth: Laying ideas out and assuming they will spread on their own. It is a […]

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Passages: Sexton

I would like a simple lifeYet all night I am layingPoems away in a long box. It is my immortality box,My lay-away plan,my coffin.         THE AMBITION BIRD Birds turn into plumber’s tools,A sonnet turns into a dirty joke,A wind turns into a tracheotomy,A boat turns into a corpse,A ribbon turns into a noose.         […]

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Done Reading

Sitting at my table, writing, reading Anne Sexton, copying down interesting lines as they pass: Is life something you play?And all the time wanting to get rid of it? from LIVE My nerves are turned on. […]You did this.Pure genius at work. Darling, the composer has stepped into fire. from THE KISS I burn the […]

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Towers of Light

I found this Wallace Stevens poem today, and it reminds me of the Towers of Light which rose through the clouds above lower Manhattan last night: It is a theatre floating in the clouds, Itself a cloud, although of misted rock And mountains running like water, wave on wave, Through waves of light. It is […]

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