Tuesday, March 22, 2011

new literature

I do hundreds of pages of reading a week generally (or at least, hundreds of pages are assigned) and am constantly discovering new authors two pour over and new books to reference. A poem by Andrew Hudgins from Bearing The Mystery about one of Botticelli's paintings caught my mind with the depth of emotion and history captured a few weeks ago. Because it must be shared, here is a segment of that and here are a few other bits and pieces from other poems as well.

Botticelli: The Lamentation over the Dead Christ

Dismiss the body bent so awkwardly
across his mother's lap: there's no god in it.
Dismiss the saint holding the nails, the thorns.
Remember only the Marys: Salome,
Cleophas, Magdalen -
and Mary, fainting virgin, her body
distended, bulging, because she suffers more
than anyone can grieve unless she loosen
her human shape and become impossible.


How Beautiful the Beloved, Gregory Orr

The poem he's writing is a list
Of things he suddenly knows
Are precious.

He doesn't know
Where he's going - old man
At the start of a long, cold ride.
The list he recites is also long.

As long as he keeps making that list,
He's traveling towards the beloved.


This house, it's a thin place,
I think. The wind outside
might be the wind that summons
the faraway and brings, as near
as breath, the spirit of the dead

Who are you?
I ask the acres of emptiness
into which everything is gathered
and is -
turning the question
at last towards my own heart,
blind and stupefied - Who?

~~Margaret Gibson

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