What the sky says

cloud speech bubble

I have been wondering what to say. Here and elsewhere.

I have been wondering what the next book is.

I have been playing with walls and stars.

I have been thinking about poems and novels.

I want to talk about memory and imagination. Mine are unreliable, mine are intertwined.

I do a lot of listening when I walk. Sometimes I forget to look.

Today, as we were leaving the Teahouse, Bhanu found this cloud speech bubble.

Is it the sky talking? The other cloud? Is it the tree?

There are so many things I want to tell you. Not all of them are true.

I don’t know what to say about Norway

I have never been there. I have never been to Iceland or Sweden. I have never been to Denmark or Finland. I have been told that the Finnish language interconnects with the Czech. Just the briefest survey makes me believe this. A more in depth look may prove me wrong.

Tonight, though, I was having a lovely salad and hot apple cider with Mongrel Goddess Bhanu Kapil. We were at Innisfree Poetry Bookstore and Café. There was a lot to talk about and we were talking about it.

Then, as occasionally happens in Boulder, a young man came in with a very large meat tenderizer. Last time I was at Innisfree, we celebrated Bhanu’s new book BAN. The bookstore became a temporary butcher shop. So, a meat tenderizer, especially given that Bhanu was there, made sense. Then, a man wearing a felt beard and felt cape came in. He announced that it was Nordic poetry night. Of course.

We listened to the meat tenderizer man read a dialogue about reckoning and dwarves and naming things. Something came over Bhanu. I didn’t know if we had to leave. There were lily-white daughters and patriarchal norms. It seemed likely that we would have to leave.

But no. We didn’t have to leave. Something came over Bhanu. She quietly asked me whether Iceland came under the Nordic purview. Really, it was a guess, but I said yes. And so when the meat tenderizer was done, and the felted beard man asked for the next reader, Bhanu raised her hand. She had a Nordic Report.

Sadly, I did not video her Nordic Report. I took photos. Here’s one:

Bhanu at Nordic poetry night

(note the felted beard man with his felted cape)

And here, briefly, is a survey of Bhanu’s Nordic Report:

Firstly, importantly, she confirmed with the felted beard man that Iceland was a valid Nordic reference. Yes. Okay. On to the report, which has three parts.

  1. Bhanu confessed a desire to run away with a corrupt Danish politician. You should also know that she has relatives in Copenhagen. If she manages to work something out with her corrupt Danish politician, well, then she could live in the same country as these relatives. It’s not like they’re ever going to move to the United States. Why would someone from Denmark move to the United States?
  2. Recently, Bhanu visited the Björk exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. Very important things happened there. Spells were broken. Room was made for a corrupt Danish politician to enter her heart. This is inspiring to me. In case it is inspiring to you, please know that the exhibition is on through June 7, 2015. I’m going to pencil it in for May 16. Email me if you want to come.
  3. This summer, Bhanu may or may not stop in Reykjavik on her way to London. At that time, she may or may not see her old friend Ragna. I may or may not have spelled that correctly. There was a myth about London life. There were moustaches and disappointments. Bhanu had to move to Brooklyn. In an unrelated incident, so did I.

And that, dear immigrants, is how we ended up at Innisfree Poetry Bookstore and Café, United States.

Today is brought to you by the number 6

Or possibly the number 2,190. Or 2,191, accounting for leap years. One sonnet a day, every day, for six years.

In summer 2008, I was between projects, as I possibly am now. What if I never had another idea? (What if I don’t?) Inspired by Marilyn Hacker’s Love, Death and the Changing of the Seasons, and probably sick of my moaning about not having any ideas, Max Regan suggested I try writing a sonnet a day. I decided on wrap-around sonnets. The end of today is the beginning of tomorrow. The first line on the first day: this is the graveyard of selves. Bit gloomy there.

Today’s first line: and how the pieces fit together.

Tomorrow, which is to say next year, will begin: the longest day and how I live it.

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Here are some things to know about the number 6:

  1. It is my mother’s favourite number. I don’t know why. I should ask her.
  2. It is Bert’s favourite number (see youtube).
  3. It is the smallest perfect number. I don’t know what that means. I could google it, but I haven’t yet and probably won’t.
  4. I have never been to a Six Flags Amusement Park. I’m okay with that.
  5. Of course, there are devilish associations when too many 6’s get together. Also, Hexa- is Classical Greek for 6. We could make something of that. Sex- is the Latin prefix. We could make something of that too.

Tomorrow, I’ll begin year seven. Also, it will be the summer solstice. And my Auntie Anna’s birthday. And Bhanu Kapil’s birthday. And the 2,192nd poem. Every day is new. And every poem.

 

A country is a moment, then another

This is the thread that helped me move countries. If by countries, I mean: one day to the next. If by moving, I mean: staying. It was a gift from Bhanu Kapil, who knows about these things.

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I tied it around my neck three times. I made three knots. It stretched and stretched. It faded and tangled. It took longer to break that I imagined it might. I went swimming in it. I toyed with it. It broke sometime over the summer. I’m sure I have it written in my notebook. I could look. Wait. July 17. Which is perfect. I probably pulled on it especially hard that day. Wanting my neck back.

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I tied new thread around my wrist today. I used my teeth to knot it. I think that’s good luck.