Tuesday, 23 September 2008

Friday, 19 September 2008

I just find it so weird that MTV would have a poet laureate.

So. Ashbery is the MTV poet laureate. I can't decide whether I like it or not. I guess I ought to. The more people that read poetry the better. But its so weird having poetry interspersed with TV commercials. I find it strangely offensive.

I don't really know much about Ashbery, aside from that he is famous. I have read some of his poems. And now, thanks to mtv, I have read some more. I think I'd be more likely to read them all if they animated the whole poems. It's nice to watch, even though the animation has an in-class presentation feel about it.

Thursday, 18 September 2008

Today I hid books in my house.

I gathered all the poorly written books I own into one pile and hid them at the back of a wardrobe, behind my father's shirts and work jackets. I feel happier now that they are there. I really didn't like looking at them. I felt they were discouraging me from writing well. But throwing them out would have felt like I was letting them win.

I keep writing poems for my class with John Haynes. Poems with ten syllables per line, and beginning with the phrase 'today i must', and in the style of arthur waley, as per the exercise. I cannot take them to class because they are just not appropriate, even though they are some of the best poems I've written. Every time I sit down to write a new one, I think, right, now I must write something suitable for class. And I just don't. I don't know why.

Things I'm grateful for.

When the cutlery is clean and in the drawer.
My 4-page CV. Hats. Sunscreen.
The rise in the price of petrol.
Tulips. Jews. The Chapman Brothers.
Graffitti. Buttons. My 65L rucksack.
The Irish. The Brazilians. Shadows.
When my Nan tap dances.
The continued existance of the Queen,
Jay Z, and my brother. Carbohydrates.
Certificates. Les Miserables. Zoey 101.
Not having to be a prostitute.
Orange. Yellow. You.

Thursday, 11 September 2008

You Should Be Sleeping

As a child I was scared of cover-girls.
I thought they'd leave the magazines
To stab me while I slept.

To minimise the chance of being stabbed
I turned them over.
If there was one on the back as well,
I was truly doomed.

My mother was a cover-girl.
I didn't know it at the time.
I am still a bit scared
Of their sharp arched eyebrows.

Tuesday, 9 September 2008

michigan nights

john's shoes, my shoes, larry, matt (john's brother). drinks, music, midnight meijer raid.

i miss john

i posted a poem of his earlier this year.

here's a picture of he and i on the beach in chicago, where he now lives with his beautiful girlfriend, Puff.

here's a poem.

I miss the way you never vacuumed your hair
From my floor after I cut it. The way you'd always
Bring me 9p bagels and slice them in two,
Then tell me I had to put them in the toaster myself.
The way you'd share your frozen blueberries
And your Digestives, but not your potato croquettes.
The way you woke me early on Sundays
Because you wanted to go to car boot sales and laugh,
And the way I woke you in the night
Because I wanted to walk and photograph the moon.
Most of all I miss your room with you in,
When everyone was sleeping but us.
I'd paint the pictures in your comic books all wrong,
Wear your socks, and tell you things which felt enormous.
You'd listen, really listen, then tell me
You really weren't the best person to talk to
Because you didn't know the answers.

costco on a sunday

Tuesday, 2 September 2008

The Giant Squid- a poem, after Bishop's 'The Fish'.

The Giant Squid

Meant to capture the monster,
haul it in; got instead a twenty-foot
tentacle, red and white and alive.
It curls narrowly at the closer end,
sticks a single white sucker
to my finger. The whale watchers
are excited in a Japanese way.
The sucker is rubbery and would slip
I watch the ring of teeth not close
against my flesh. Shivers, shivers rise
as waves to the gum-like warmth.
Twenty feet below sea level
my camera captures 550 stills
Of the monster- it loses a limb
freeing itself from my trap.
The tentacle moves like an ‘S’
And flays against the deck:
I cannot tell if it is attacking
and don't know why it's living still.
The Squid Expert from New Zealand
would like to jar a giant squid,
this tentacle; he says stills
are not significant, even history's first.
He must rear one from infancy,
that it may not know the rugged sea.
But I'll take these stills
and analyze until they make sense;
May the voiceovers call me science,
say I penetrate the deep.