Thursday, December 23, 2010

The 2010 Best Poetry List

So, old and new, what I read in 2010 and loved, in somewhat chronological order.

1. The Last 4 Things - Kate Greenstreet
2. What We Carry - Dorianne Laux
3. The Other Life - Herbert Scott
4. The Nervous Filaments - David Dodd Lee
5. A Mouth In California - Graham Foust
6. 40 Watts - C.D. Wright
7. The Difficult Farm - Heather Christle
8. With Deer - Aase Berg
9. Sky Booths In The Breath Somewhere: THE ASHBERY ERASURE poems - David Dodd Lee
10. Great Balls of Fire - Ron Padgett
11. Compulsions of Silk Worms and Bees: Poems - Julianna Baggott
12. Above All Else, The Trembling Resembles A Forest - Louise Mathias
13. Dance Dance Revolution: Poems - Cathy Park Hong
14. Garbage: A Poem - A.R. Ammons
15. The Lives of the Heart - Jane Hirschfield
16. Monolithos: Poems - Jack Gilbert
17. The Dance Most of All: Poems - Jack Gilbert
18. Collected Poems - James Schuyler
19. Watermark - Clayton Michaels
20. All of It Singing: New and Selected Poems - Linda Gregg
21. Orphan, Indiana - David Dodd Lee
22. Stories That Listen - Priscilla Becker
23. Bunny - Selima Hill
24. Above The River - James Wright

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Gang Language

Another semester's finished (everyone passed everything) and the gang's all here. Tom & Mary & grand-cat Penny Lane slid down from Kalamazoo on Thursday; Jojo blew in from California last night; Gene put his out-of-office message on his e-mail and his phone. There are piles and pieces of living scattered everywhere. The grand-cat is leaping from bookshelf to bookshelf and stalking Jojo's turtles. Sylvia has already had to sit in her crate for being overly protective of Jo. Today, at last, we can all go and cut the Christmas tree. We're probably going to need bandaids. I looked this morning at my five pairs of scissors all lined up neatly in the kitchen drawer and said, nice knowing you. By this afternoon, they will all have disappeared. But who needs them? I can rip paper with my teeth. I have a thousand hands. In three weeks, when this is all over, I'll be ready for calm and order. Today, however, the chaos feels grand.

Thursday, December 09, 2010

Early December

I had to wiggle out of bed this morning, my torso sandwiched between two large dogs. It's cold out. I'm watching another semester close. Jo will be home momentarily, or in a week. I should do all the baking ahead. Tom's car needs an alignment and new tires. I'm dreaming of Bisbee, Arizona, where I could get by with a jacket at night and short sleeves during the day. I would buy dishes from the Bisbee pottery lady when her shop is open and she's not somewhere else, stoned. Meanwhile, in Indiana, my grandfather is dying, the last one. I'm working my regular day and night job, where I learn that the woman who was murdered in Covert, her face was stuck to the pavement of Blue Star Highway after she had been run over three times by various cars. I used up all my strong emotions when I was younger. If the weather warms up I'll go to the park. I'll walk the dogs.

Tuesday, December 07, 2010