Sunday, April 06, 2008

"Things to Be Afraid Of"

Poems retrieved: Thanks to the patient advice of Randy, Sebastian and Eric (the latter one of my former students), I was able to retrieve my files from the laptop, where they were indeed backed up (and hidden) just before the flash drive strangled itself. Phew. What a scare: such a visceral loss of identity--I realize now the degree to which I believe I am what I do.
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I owe Eduardo a phone call.
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Here's a poem by Patrick Lawler, from his wonderful 1990 book A Drowning Man Is Never Tall Enough:


Light. The cities’ aortas of light.
Things to be afraid of: nowhere
And platitudes. White places.
And places to dance. Apocalyptic
Ceremonies when we find the language
For them. Nothing. To be afraid. There is
Silence and words. The breaking leaves.
The effortless. Schools of white
Butterflies, like schooners, like bits
Of torn paper. There is nothing. Our names.
Pictures of a beautiful woman
Touching the eyes of a yellow ding
Man. Things to be afraid of.
Plagiary. The planes of air. Anything
Permanent. The breakable. Winter,
Charts, spare rooms, matches, songs
Nailed to the chest. Anecdotes.
Manganese and mythology. Extra
Innings. Enumerations. Always
Nothing which is nothing to be afraid of.

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