process …


This poem is one I have returned to many times, first beginning in the fall of 2008 when I began to write it for an Art Hop reading at the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts. The poem was inspired by an aerial photograph of a row of lakeside houses in the Michigan artists’ exhibit, Perspectives on Place. Ultimately, this was not the artwork that moved me enough to use it in the KIA Art Hop reading, but it became one of those … (I am trying to find a perfect way to describe this and will; it will thus be reported) one of those … for now I will call apparition poems … that little guy you see in the corner of your eye and when you look with your head it is gone as if its existence was a tease.

But here it sits, in me, in my purse, notebook, file folder … it keeps moving about … and it is still my little enigma. Likely one of the poems that has been most an enigma — its silhouette of language teasing like a movie soundtrack in the middle of the night.

To me, it almost reads like a soundtrack … since it is an audible narrative of my emotions in the fall … good ones reflecting on bad ones / present reflecting on past.

And maybe it is WHAT it is … perhaps it is the lily-backed fodder of that little story waiting in my head, rattling and rolling like a cheap travel game: plastic mingling with the sudden heart attack of a delicate ball trying to find its place, its divot, its gutter.

My reading at the Woodland Pattern Book Center was great. I was worried about my confidence being gone since it has been so long since I have read to an audience, and this is perhaps the largest audience for whom I have ever performed. I ended up reading 3 poems from Ward Eighty-One after promising myself I would finish another poem that grasps at me like a baby for a breast. Well, two poems — one following me all over Milwaukee while we ate steaks and drank obscure German beer; one coming the morning we were to leave to come back home … you in the morning. Here is the latter, a definite illustration of process — groggy and blushing morning poetry.


There will always be something delightfully destructive in my bones when I look at you in the morning, especially lying on that much white. More poetry will come in this, from this, and therein lies Process … lies life no matter what anymore.

Published in: on February 4, 2009 at 12:27 am  Leave a Comment  

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