Posts Tagged ‘The New Census’

The New Census: Sandra Doller

Our feature of Rescue Press’ new anthology of contemporary poetry, The New Census, concludes today with poetry from Sandra Doller. Thanks so much to all the editors and poets who contributed to the anthology and the feature — it’s been a lot of fun for us to read. You can purchase the anthology here.



Dance390


/


finger pointing
come hither
what did you capture
what did you land on
snap
uh snap
uh snap
here’s one—I’ve got one
spiral jetty on the
black top.


/


what did you see
what I saw what I
fanned myself I shared
a moment of fanning
I told myself fall down
I said to fall down is
to be forgotten
is to be lonely on the
black top
I have never used
this word this pen
before.


/


write the soundtrack sound tack
spread it out and try to
move forward only
1 inch try to stop
yourself from this side
to side
run around a downside
an email is being
sent a hardness
how do they know?


/


-what is an
impossible
image?
-where did she go?
-what was her name again?
-why are we here?
-will you share it?
-why is the floor stomping?
-what about that?
-why not?


/


-fire under water
-sad jokes
-unhappy ice cream
-sorry holiday


/


where are you now?
what was that wave?
what sound does the foot
make on the
asphalt sidewalk
pavement
tush
beanbag
excise
too such
statue.


/


only questions I have
are where why
when I woke up I
so wake me up
did you just lift your foot?
did you just ask me to dance?
can you write and listen?
what happens without
music?
what are you afraid of?


/


I doubted it—I didn’t
believe it—
I told you I didn’t
know—
what just happened here?
what did you say?
what was on your foot?
why were you standing
there?
is this how you feel?
is it over?


/


what is your focus?
a distraction a diversion
a Sandra a
sandy
they’re saying my name
I can’t focus without my
name
once my name is
spoken
whistled a
charm.


/


Advertisements

The New Census: Carrie Olivia Adams

Our feature of Rescue Press’ new anthology of contemporary poetry, The New Census, continues this week with new poetry by contributors to the anthology. Today we have new work from Carrie Olivia Adams. You can purchase the anthology here.



from Daughter of a Tree Farm


A widow, belonging by fire. A beehive’s swarm of bees attacking a bear, made small. Finishing schools to earn the well-known favorite honor of departure. A peeress, a remarkable beauty against her will, to liaison the leaves. She lived for the remainder in the village buried near the church in the sight of God, the view of man, took part in the battle.



                                                                                        *



A body that medicine has given up, refuses to diagnose. I finished, I cried, separated. In mathematics, I soon forgot the mark at hearing the heroines myself. It was so windy there. Our family had not seen our way back. Almost daily, handed a proposal of struggle. How else to combat the farm’s idleness? The itch of still. I did not think it was possible. It goes on like this. I shall go and tell everything or shoot. Life had passed. The force of the need. Fate and activity began to consider their origin but did not like to be called in. I remember how to listen to anything new. We lived a recall that passed us by; we followed nothing. I desired nothing else but to develop as though they were living. I had no other proof.


The New Census: Nick Lantz on Nicky Beer

This week we continue our feature of The New Census: an Anthology of Contemporary American Poetry, a lovely new book edited by Lauren Shapiro & Kevin A. Gonzalez, and published by Rescue Press. You can purchase the anthology here. Today, New Census contributor Nick Lantz introduces a poem from the anthology written by Nicky Beer.


Phrases about The New Census from an Online Chat (Continued):
…how will The New Census be remembered…the anthology most like it might be Legitimate Dangers…The New Census is farther along the continuum…the easiest and least-helpful way to review an anthology…



Every Poem Is A Dead Uncle
                —after Nicky Beer’s “Avuncularity”


I’m drawn to poetic ghosts, images discernible only in the periphery, residues that index what’s missing: the flutter of a shadow, imprint of teeth in an apple, reflections in storefront glass, indentations left in old furniture, scents that linger after a figure has long since turned a corner. I sometimes tell my students that they will write better poems if they stop trying to describe, and instead try to evoke. How can one ever hope to describe a person, a feeling? One must tease the reader’s imagination. One must drop morsels to lure it from its cave.


Nicky Beer’s “Avuncularity” begins by claiming that “Every child ought to have a dead uncle”—not present, but evoked by his artifacts, necessarily incomplete, “a handful of epochal snapshots/where the face is always blurred.” The uncle is drawn with enough clarity that he is real, but he contains deliberate gaps, lapses, lacunae: he is a vessel into which imagination can pour itself. In Beer’s wonderful poem, it is the imagination of blame: the poem invites the reader to lay her quirks and fractures and failings at the uncle’s feet. The uncle is the fetish filled with her dark thoughts and then buried in the woods by the edge of a field. Accounted for, expunged.


But the ghost uncle is also the poem itself—every good poem, in fact—a vacuum that draws in our imagination. Given a little of the right detail, the mind springs to life, sketches in the rest. Did Beer say the uncle had a beard? That he wore a plaid shirt? No, no, but there he is—beard, plaid shirt, halo of sweet pipe smoke. I can hear the laugh she never mentioned.


When the potter throws a vase, he builds a hollow inside of it. The closet the frightened child stares into at night is real, but vacant. To say that a poem contains an emptiness is not to disparage it but to praise it. That emptiness is filled with a ghost, the presence that we believe into it.


You can read the poem here and listen to Nicky Beer reading it here.


The New Census: Darcie Dennigan on Sawako Nakayasu

This week we continue our feature of The New Census: an Anthology of Contemporary American Poetry, a lovely new book edited by Lauren Shapiro & Kevin A. Gonzalez, and published by Rescue Press. You can purchase the anthology here. Today, New Census contributor Darcie Dennigan addresses fellow contributor Sawako Nakayasu.


Phrases about The New Census from an Online Chat (Continued):
…name a center and then the everything starts to look like an exception…Chris Martin’s swooning lyricism, Dora Malech’s jeweled musical lines, Sawako Nakayasu’s language between registers…(to be continued)…



Letter of Love to Sawako Nakayasu


dear Sawako, here (edit: below) is a small negative image of your hamburger poem, the 9.2.2003 Texture Note (page 236 in The New Census)


Dream about cows.


Hanging upside down from the sky inside a herd of cows.


Inside the first line of the Les Murray poem, “The Cows on Killing Day“: the sky is shining.
Each cow gets a football field of grass to herself. Except there is no football here, and so there are no tailgating BBQers, and so there is no need of hamburger.


SN, I really love this poem for its grossness and funniness and tragedy and ache. Since reading it, I have wanted desperately to rescue you from the hamburger labyrinth.
But I don’t really know the way out, so I wanted to give you these cows that my husband drew so that you could at least go back to the beginning and start again.


Sincerely,
darcie



by Carl Dimitri

by Carl Dimitri

The New Census: Chris Martin on Emily Kendal Frey

This week we continue our feature of The New Census: an Anthology of Contemporary American Poetry, a lovely new book edited by Lauren Shapiro & Kevin A. Gonzalez, and published by Rescue Press. You can purchase the anthology here. Today, New Census contributor Chris Martin introduces Emily Kendal Frey’s work from the anthology.


Phrases about The New Census from an Online Chat (Continued):
…to make this center a “reason for liking” the less characteristic work…Emily Kendal Frey’s “Kaaba/Kiss the Stone,” Darcie Dennigan’s work, J. Michael Martinez’s essayistic tinkering, the horror and rage running under Sabrina Orah Mark’s prose…(to be continued)…



An Introduction to Emily Kendal Frey’s “KAABA/Kiss the Stone”


This is a poem about why humans make song. At least it is to me. I figure there are two purposes in life: love people and sing the universe back to itself. Emily’s poem is about both. The spell that is spelling. First you have a hollow aching palm and next you have a Martian lamp. Because you need to sing something, to have and to hold something, if nowhere else, in your mouth. This is what we do. Poets. We take nothing and figure out how to fuck it into something. Lyric poetry. Dry friction until the genie finally arrives. We show her our empty pocket and she turns it inside out. Then someone tells that joke about petting a rabbit between the ears. But it’s true. An empty pocket (palm) becomes an ear (lamp). Nothing gets truly fucked into a great big ear. And what does an ear do but beat out the world’s secret name on its fleshy drum? A no held in the ear grows and becomes nominal. A patina of life, miraculous, some frost shaking atop the neighbor’s dog shit. A golden letter. Epistolary. Dear God, we write, thanks for nothing. And suddenly we mean it. Just waiting in bed. A puddle of sun on someone’s exposed torso. What good is language? Dad gets stuck in your lung like a carrot. Pure magic. So when the sun says nothing our organs yawn and sway. We listen to its sacred totally banal nothing all morning. Just standing there and neither of us appearing to move. Pubic shining death banter. The weirdness of having come / out a hole. Our mouths our empty pockets. Because the song is like nuclear fallout, falling everywhere. All we have to do is pick it up. Light. All we need are horny Martians. And teeth. Right?


You can watch Emily Kendal Frey read “KAABA / Kiss the Stone” here.


The New Census: An Open Letter by Kiki Petrosino

This week we continue our feature of The New Census: an Anthology of Contemporary American Poetry, a lovely new book edited by Lauren Shapiro & Kevin A. Gonzalez, and published by Rescue Press. You can purchase the anthology here. Today, New Census contributor Kiki Petrosino responds to the anthology at large.


Phrases about The New Census from an Online Chat (Continued):
…rectangular stanzas of first-person narration…even-tempered propositional declaratives…“Every child ought to have a dead uncle”…“Love begins as a dream and ends as a rumor”…“Not one of my costumes is believable”…(to be continued)…



The New Census: An Open Letter


Dear Smallest Brightest Test-Case Planet,


Let me tell you about music. Sweet-lipped, inexact.
How it sidesteps up the scale, then down.


What music do I mean? Swaybacked! Sloe-eyed!
Let me tell you.


A song like that once came for me at 3 a.m. and stayed until
I’d gulped down all the rum in a green mug.


Now I look for music everywhere, but it finds me
only sometimes. Only sometimes at the best times, as


at the turnings of lines or in the riv(ul)ets between drafts.
Makes me rattle my rattles.


One-two. Got to.


I aim “[t]o pronounce your medicine in my mouth,” as Eric
Baus tells it. How sound can save us, medicine-like.


Always “medicine” is a word for the music we can’t
pronounce. Do you know the word for when


Eduardo Corral’s “Gold/curves” dissolve into
“Gold scarves?” That music, like a pastille melting


on the tongue. That slant medicine. Got to take that
dose now, got to try and remember when


“Sound was God, as she understood it, always poised to listen”
Yona Harvey says, as we try to eyedropper


her medicine all the way into our little ears poised
to hear: “When the synthecrabs squirm


in the beaker,” as John Beer observes, measuring his music.
So we crouch, listening (one-two) for new animals


tapping their claws against beaker-glass.
Or “thimbleberries, black, thud out of the night”


as Kathleen Ossip knows. Got to swerve to hear her
counting the thimbleberry thuds like quarter notes


across her line. Just so, we dig rivulets and
rumblestrips to music us awake. We ask for poems


to weight our tongues down. Ask sweetly.
Got to, one-two. Let me tell you how.