Writing a Poem
The implements must be
readied beside you: a knife,
a fish hook, a small drill,
a carved fetish the size
of your hand.
The setting is also key:
sit in the middle of a bonfire,
or in the hold of a large boat
as it slowly sinks into the ocean.
You must clear your mind. No
moonlight, no goats, no sweet
salads, no lips filling the horizon,
no soft white hands, no fragrant
necks, your mind a flat
line as when a machine registers
the end with a single continuous tone.
Now reach over and grab her hair,
wind it round your thumb and pinky;
never let go.
I've been working on a manuscript to send out -- I finally twisted a publisher's arm enough that she agreed to look at it -- called The Salt Daughter. I've gathered all my poems together that focus on family themes and ambivalence and I'm so happy the way they've working out! I've got them so they almost read like a novel. All the poems speak to each other; i.e.; by the time you get to the last poem you understand the word "Pie" differently, because of how it was used in previous poems. I hope she likes it! She just agreed to look at it because I'm doing book covers for free for her. The title relates to all the food in the poems and also, Lot's wife. And tears! tears too.