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Thursday, July 19, 2012

Poemaday #1

There is this thing on twitter called #bookaday which is a fabulous idea wherein people encourage each other to read (you guessed it) 1 book per day.  I believe this was started by the wonderful Donalyn Miller (correct me if I am wrong, please).  Anyway, summer is my super duper busy time at the library, so, some days, I have no time to read AT ALL (shocking, isn't it!) and, even though I so very much want to participate in #bookaday, it simply isn't practical for me right now. 


So, I've instigated #poemaday wherein I memorize 1 poem per day.  I'm starting out with some of my favorite poems, but will probably memorize lots of the super short poems by people such as Emily Dickinson, William Carlos Williams, and even Shel Silverstein.  Just so long as I try to memorize 1 poem per day for the rest of the summer.  By the time I am finished, I will hopefully have about 45 new poems in my brain.


To start with, I discovered this poem by Sylvia Plath the other day and just fell in love with it.  Sylvia Plath is my favorite poet, and, having just read the wonderful Your Own, Sylvia: A Verse Portrait of Sylvia Plath by Stephanie Hemphill, I thought it would be a fitting start to my adventure.


Here is the poem (but be forwarned, it has some gruesome imagery!)


Street Song by Sylvia Plath


By a mad miracle I go intact
Among the common rout
Thronging sidewalk, street,
And bickering shops;
Nobody blinks a lid, gapes,
Or cries that this raw flesh
Reeks of the butcher's cleaver,
Its heart and guts hung hooked
And bloodied as a cow's split frame
Parceled out by white-jacketed assassins.


Oh no, for I strut it clever
As a greenly escaped idiot,
Buying wine, bread,
Yellow-casqued chrysanthemums -
Arming myself with the most reasonable items
To ward off, at all cost, suspicions
Roused by thorned hands, feet, head
And that great wound
Squandering red
From the flayed side.


Even as my each mangled nerve-end
Trills its hurt out
Above pitch of pedestrian ear,
So, perhaps I, knelled dumb by your absence,
Alone can hear
Sun's parched scream,
Every downfall and crash
Of gutted star,
And, more daft than any goose,
This cracked world's incessant gabble and hiss.

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