Monday, May 9, 2016

A lot of this prose was meant in verse.
Fits the old Shakespeare plan,
iambic pentameter,
whatever that is.  It's the way
you write, nail things down,
exercise the spirits. Boom, boom,
That's how you say the mighty things,
the poetic, of which the writer has
no real control over, but when he
or she, too, is flowing like a dewdrop.
Read it so, that's the structure,
the DNA
of words.

High up in a pine tree, you watched it come about,
the fallen bits on the sidewalk
where the bridge meets that road
to the parkway.  Across from the mosque.
Where you saw the Pope drive by.
A crow builds a nest out of twigs,
like all birds do.  The mind grasps for words,
the same way, a thought, unbidden, uncontrolled,
that comes, like old man Hamlet says
about being confined to fast in fires
in some afterlife 'til sins are burned away
some rich choice of words to suffice.
Let the ear do the work,
and listen.

How can the line, of prose,
be distinct from that of the poem,
of the drama?  Is it how you put it down,
on paper?  Larkin says, writes,
this be verse.

There is no shortage of that,
verse, words, the pithy things a man has to say.
Carved in stone in runes,
they took the trouble,
the circular of life.

But will one be
remembered as a poet,
when things are sifted out.
There is that necessity, of all jobs,
doctor, president, teacher,
to let that poem in,
if things are to be right and strong.

A poem, properly,
is long.

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