national poetry month

It hasn't escaped me that April is national poetry month in America.  According to Wikipedia, April is also:  Child Abuse Prevention Month, Sexual Assault Awareness Month, Confederate History Month, Financial Literacy Month, National Multiple Birth Awareness Month (multiple birth?? really?? I need to be aware of this ???), School Library Month, Earth Awareness Month, Math Awareness Month, Autism Awareness Month, Occupational Therapy Month, Month of the Military Child, Adenomyosis Awareness Month (what???), Polycystic Ovary Syndrome month, Southern Side Dish Potluck Month and Alcohol Awareness Month ....... phew.  What a list.  I don't know what half of these designations are ...?!  Umm... I posted on grapefruit vodka, so I suppose that covers Alcohol Awareness ..... and so on and so forth.  So much for commemorative months.  Suffice to say that yes, I am, as always, reading poetry this month thanks to Soub for gifting me with Ted Kooser's  Delights and Shadows. I wouldn't say that I am particularly delighted by Kooser's work as a whole (and this is probably more a testament to my general mood of late spring apathy than a commentary on Ted's writing), but I do find small gems of lines scattered about in this slim volume that do delight me.  And possibly in this age of the text, the instagram, the facebook wall, the tumblr blog, I am getting what I deserve:  the 60 second flash poem.  What better way to impress upon friends and colleagues that I am erudite and cultured than to wittily rejoin (without proper context of course):  The sweet small clumsy feet of April came into the ragged meadow of my soul ... e.e. cummings, thank you.  It has been quite a popular reblog on tumblr recently with 7497 likes and / or reblogs so far.  Have many delved farther into this small sweet line?  if i have made, my lady, intricate appears to be neither sweet nor clumsy.  Shall we add the rest of the truncated poem's lines?  Oh sure, RDG, let's go there:

if i have made, my lady, intricate
imperfect various things chiefly which wrong
your eyes (frailer than most deep dreams are frail)
songs less firm than your body's whitest song
upon my mind-if i have failed to snare
the glance too shy-if through my singing slips
the very skillful strangeness of your smile
the keep primeval silence of your hair

-let the world say "his most wise music stole
nothing from death"-
you only will create
(who are so perfectly alive) my shame:
lady through whose profound and fragile lips
the sweet small clumsy feet of April came

into the ragged meadow of my soul.

And my mind is utterly exhausted.  The line describing a lady's profound and fragile lips certainly changes the context of April's sweet small clumsy feet.  Forgive me my lack of intellectual enthusiasm:  I'll take the 60 second version, thank you, along with my cinnamon dolce latte with extra whip. (An aside:  I thought this inability to sustain prolonged attention to, albeit, a rather short poem would be the defining trait of 'hipster', but urban dictionary has rightly chastised me.  Aging anti-hipster is probably a better self description). And I refuse to chalk up my transient apathy to age.  I think it is more a case of the delayed blues - January and February being full of housey thoughts and doings - so my old blue friend has come to lay his head in my April lap.  I did intend to share a few of Ted Kooser's better lines, but the book is upstairs and upstairs is a lot further away from downstairs in the new house than it was at the townhouse.  There was a particularly great image of two young cousins spying on an aunt courting her boyfriend in a porch swing.  They were hiding on the roof above and so caught up in stifling their laughter, they peed on the roof.  Ted's poems are "accessible" in that way ... (yep, that was from a dust jacket review.) And I have a lovely Mary Oliver poem I want to post.  She uses the word 'corpuscle' - I just love that!  But in the way of tumblr and 60 second poems, I think the Mary Oliver poem is an amalgamation of two or three of Mary's poems.  Or a mix of her better lines ..........

I think I'll tackle Math Awareness in my next post.



goatman said...

The fellow writing that definition must have been paid by the word . . . what a stream of ?>@#!

Hipster to Frat Boy #2: "Not cool man, the potato goes in the front". (old Aggie joke)

Lee said...

I agree with goatman's sentiments...convoluted posturing..."a steam of ?>@#" describes it well.

Adullamite said...

"Erudite, cultured and witty."
Sounds right for you.

red dirt girl said...

Hahahaa ..... Why do I never get offered jobs like that ??? Seriously, I've heard someone has the job of coming up with all the neighborhood and street names in our fair suburb. I want to name things and get paid for it. I want to write bullshit definitions (well, honestly, I already DO that) and get PAID for it.

They say you are only as cultured as your roots, and my mama lived in a trailer park once ... but I thank you for the compliment, Adullamite. Keep them coming. I am using them as training guides for Soub :-)


J Cosmo Newbery said...

I'm exhausted!