Archive for the ‘Poetry’ Category

Fables of the trees

October 15, 2018

It began with this poignant texty on Facebook:

(#1)

Voting as part of the story marks this as a recent version, and the shrinking forest (possibly an allusion to deforestation) might be recent as well. But the main idea — that the trees accepted the axe because its handle was wood and they thought it was one of them — feels antique, fabulesque. And so it is.

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Proustian paradise poems

September 17, 2018

In the most recent New York Times Magazine, “On a Line by Proust” by Adam Giannelli. Then, from the “graduation dinner” for the 1990-91 Fellows at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences, my “class poem”, “Les vrais paradis sont les paradis qu’on a perdus” (the very line by Proust). The Giannelli is a villanelle of sorts, for a general audience; mine is very free verse, also occasional verse written for a small community.

In chronological order.

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Mandarin orange at the Malamute Saloon

August 30, 2018

Yesterday’s morning names. I have a ghost of a clue as to why Mandarin oranges came to me at dawn, but the Malamute Saloon is a total mystery.

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The penis art of David the Robot

August 26, 2018

… plus — surprise! — reflections on occupational labels and on limericks.

(There will be discussions of male genitalia and mansex, but no X-rated images; these are isolated in an AZBlogX posting yesterday, “Dave the Robot takes pen in hand”. The posting below isn’t couched in street language, but it cites some street language, some of the limericks are dirty, and other parts of its content might be unsuitable for the sexually modest or for kids.)

The XBlog posting begins (#1 and #2 there) with a drawing — entitled “Bros” — of two naked men whose penises are embracing. Cropped here to show the sketchbook style (a kind of deliberate artlessness) of the drawing:

(#1)

Then on to the artist, who has achieved some sort of fame via raunchy sketches on Instagram featuring genitalia and bodily fluids.

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BILLY COLLINS Billy Collins

July 31, 2018

Not just any Billy Collins, but Billy Collins Billy Collins — prototypical Billy Collins, the Billy Collins. Who I’m posting about here because one of his poems prominently features the morphological construction Contrastive Focus Reduplication, or CFR (which I’m going to cite in a forthcoming posting about two New Yorker cartoons on dating).

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Swiss spin-off: Wallisellen

June 27, 2018

The town of Wallisellen in Canton Zürich, Switzerland, has just come up again on this blog (in the posting “Three Züricher Peter Zwickys”), as the site of the Zwicky silk-thread company and now the Zwicky construction and real estate company. Two notable things about the place (from its Wikipedia page): the etymology of its name, which looks like a compound (and is), but without easily identifiable parts; and a Swiss German nonsense rhyme that incorporates the town’s name.

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Typewriter poets

June 1, 2018

The Zippy from the 30th, with the Dingburg School of beatnik typewriter poets:

They compose on their typewriters, creating poetic texts that are (to the untrained eye) just strings of characters. Their names are absurd combinations of words Bill Griffith finds attractive or risible: Feldspar Hatband, Mulch Onionskin. (I am especially fond of feldspar myself, have been for years.)

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Spoiling

May 8, 2018

An AMZ poetry moment.

From the New York Times Magazine, Terrance Hayes’s Poem column: “Too Many Cooks Spoil the Broth” (in print 5/6, on-line 5/4), by Aimee Nezhukumatathil:

Too many needles spoil the cloth.
Too many parrots spoil the talk.
Too many chapped lips spoil the gloss.
Too many teasel burs spoil the paw.
Too many bubbles spoil the froth.
Too many doorbells spoil the knock.
Too many seeds spoil the floss.
Too many feathers spoil the claw.
Too many lightbulbs spoil the moth.
Too many holes spoil the sock.
Too many sunbeams spoil the moss.
Too many kisses spoil the jaw.
Too many wolves spoil the flock.
Too many necks spoil the block.

All edgy domesticity until the end, when ravening wolves and beheadings erupt.

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Then, if ever, come lusty days

May 4, 2018

What is so rare as a day in May?

Caught on the Our Bastard Language group on Facebook this morning, this Addison cartoon (by Mark Addison Kershaw):

(#1) Sexy springtime (in the northern hemisphere)

Birds are urgently trolling for sex on every street corner and mating shamelessly in the bushes. Plants are flagrantly displaying their female parts, meanwhile spraying the botanical counterpart of semen everywhere. It’s a jungle out there.

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acuminate

April 29, 2018

Today’s morning name, and it turns out to be surprisingly relevant today.

adjective acuminate: Biology (of a plant or animal structure, e.g. a leaf) tapering to a point. ORIGIN late 16th century: from late Latin acuminatus ‘pointed’, from acuminare ‘sharpen to a point’, from acuere ‘sharpen’ [cf. acute].

Relevant to my daily life through the variegated agave (Agave desmetiana) that flourishes on my back patio (last noted here in my 11/4/17 posting “The succulent report”); it has wicked needle-like — acuminate — leaf tips that wound me every time I try to work around the plant. These plants evolved to seriously stave off herbivores and other pesky creatures.

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