April is national poetry month. Just another month dedicated toward something we should always pay attention to, but for some reason don't. I bet dystopian YA authors are all like "why isn't there a national YA dystopian novel month????" Well because every month is YA dystopian novel month. Duh.
I was excited to get Daniel Bailey's Hallelujah Giant Space Wolf in the mail. Pre-ordering books makes me feel like a wizard; conjuring up literature from the depths of the internet, and having it delivered directly into my hands. It obviously doesn't take much for me to feel like a wizard.
It's hard to take portions of poems and share them -- out of context a stanza can lose its meaning, or even make up the entire poem. But I'm still going to try. Sorry. These are too good not to share.
From "I WANT TO GET DRUNK WITH YOU"
I believe the people who say that God is a woman
but they forgot to mention her sadness
or how my body is not of her image
or how the ocean is a body with fish for blood
From "LOVE YOURSELF, OR ELSE"
nothing is still a term of emptiness that I keep inside me like fur on the lungsalso
I try hard not to think of all the bad things I have done to the inside of me
not knowing what I was doing, putting all manner of things into me
swords, plant growth hormone, monuments to smallness, the almighty
I want my faith to be emptied out like bursts of last night's drinking
my god, the faith that I consume is enough to drown a rat, so let it
when water hits dust it all settles down into nothing, so let it
all the unborn babies in the world are unborn so let them not be
born into a world that still shakes at a promise like a hawk-dive field
where the rats get picked up like rocks by the river by a child on vacation
to a small state border battlefield where old men are honored
by the throwing of rocks into cold rivers overrun with tourists
I really like the absence of end-line punctuation in poems. One simile flows into another so seamlessly that you forget what was being described in the first place. Like in the segment above: it's a promise, then rats, then rocks, by a river, in a battlefield, overrun by tourists. It works. Kind of reminds me of these "run-on sentence" stories I used to write in high school. Bored in computer science class, a friend and I would spend every day writing insane stories in MS Word, saving them to my purple 3.5" floppy disk with the frog sticker on it. Sometimes I would start typing and she would click the mouse at random points in the document; the result being a big textual slide puzzle. Picasso on computer paper. We were Gertrude Steins without trying. But I specialized in one sentence stories. One in particular I remember consisted of just one giant run-on sentence, 5 pages in length. I think it was Dragonball Z themed. I took some creative writing courses as an undergrad, but I'll never again be as creative as when I was just a bored kid, not trying to be creative.
I probably still have that floppy disk somewhere, being a hoarder of inane high school memorabilia. It took 5 years before I would throw away my 11th grade calculus notebook. One day my grandkids will find the floppy disk and feel nothing.
From "ASS WITHIN AN ASS"
I don't know the difference
the meaning of life
the meaning of life
From "HALLELUJAH GIANT SPACE WOLF"
society is angry and that makes me mad
planting a bomb in your neighbor's garden
will not teach him a lesson
planting a flower in your neighbor's mailbox
does not mean that you are a good person
we will never be good people
we will never be right, we will not
the cats are all sleeping and the forks are quiet
and someday jupiter will not exist
and someday the earth will not exist
and someday love will not exist
and some days I really do love you
and that is why I am so quiet most of the time
From "I AM NOT A PERSON"
this moment is strange
it is like a bird egg planted into the soil
allowed to incubate for a time
only to hatch a snake
it is like the pilgrims
who sailed to the moon
to be closer to God
because the direction
of God is up
only to find that on the moon
up is where they used to be
Poems I wanted to quote in their entirety but I better not because that would probably violate copyright law and get points subtracted from Gryffindor:
"POEM FOR THE TRYING"
"SWORDFIGHT ON THE COUNT OF 3 OK...3"
"UNDERWATER GOD I WANT TO BE UNDERWATER GOD"
You should buy Daniel Bailey's book. And read other poetry too. It will make you think about death and get sad and stuff. But also make you remember why you like words so much. And stuff.
And thanks, blogger, for taking away the automatic spacing in html editing! I really enjoyed typing in all the < br >'s by hand in the blockquotes! I'm being sarcastic!