Monday, November 11, 2013

A mushy pear

There is no great poem in our language which is simply happy. … We reach for explanations: maybe to be happy is to be a simpleton; maybe poets are morbid; maybe life is darker than it is light; maybe when you are happy you are too busy being happy to write poems about it and when you are sad, you write poems in order to do something. There may be half-truths in these common ideas, but the real explanation lies in the structure of a poem; and, I suggest, in the structure of human reality. Energy arises from conflict. … The sensual body of a poem is a pleasure separate from any message the poem may contain. … If the poem contains a message which is pleasurable (a word I have just substituted for “happy), then the two pleasures walk agreeably together for a few feet, and collapse into a smiling lethargy. The happy poem sleeps in the sun.

—Donald Hall from Claims for Poetry

“A mushy pear”

Please excuse Daniel.
Yesterday, he wrote
his daily Ghazal,
but it was a fruit
for the compost pile.

On the sweet pursuit
of a Parisian
day, who cares what art
has to say? No grain
scrapes to spark a pearl.

His words fell supine
in giggling puddles,
convening at nine
into a little
daydream of moments.

He barely cobbled
the sea-glass bottle.

No comments:

Post a Comment