Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Light, the Pope, his Toe and the Afterlife: Two Poems written along with my students in Poetry Class




The Pope, his Toe and the Afterlife

everything you say is bleeped out by birds
you threaten some guy on the ISIS listserve
and all he hears is chickens
but it’s ok, all of ISIS sounds like chickadee-dee-dee

what does the Pope say when he stubs his toe?
(lets get back to that later)
when two continents collide, it sounds like blackbirds
and the bomb that destroyed my village is a hummingbird

even these words are incomprehensible
the entire poem, hollow-boned, hovering
I live by the light of the new philosophy
and all that can be heard is squawks

and maybe it’s not what the Pope says but
what his parrot says when Papa stubs his toe
was is it? that’s easy, the same thing as the Pope:
Soon, goddammit, this’ll all be cloud






Light

A form of darkness that isn’t visible. 

Here’s how. Imagine it’s not your eyelids, but the rest of you which opens. Where? Close. You’re always close. If there are colours beyond the visible spectrum, ultraviolet, infrared, there are other forms of dark. Colour is fast sound just as sound is slow colour. Silence creeps like sunlight on your skin, and you aged eight, lying in the garden, and your mother calls from the side door, come inside soon it’ll all be gone.


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The above are two more poems that I wrote as my students wrote in creative writing class. The first one is based on David McGimpsey's "chubby sonnets" and inspired by his investigations into narrative, the self, and popular culture.

The second was inspired by Bhanu Kapil's interventions into the Urban Dictionary where she inserts her own poetic, obliquely narrative "definitions" into UrbanDictionary.com.

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