Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Where the Bees Hum

—Denise Levertov

We are a meadow where the bees hum,
mind and body are almost one

as the fire snaps in the stove
and our eyes close,

and mouth to mouth, the covers
pulled over our shoulders,

we drowse as horses drowse afield,
in accord; though the fall cold

surrounds our warm bed, and though
by day we are singular and often lonely.


Teen workshop in Davis:

Rae Gourirand of Davis writes to tell us about the teen poetry workshops that she will be teaching at the Davis Branch Library after school on Thursdays for eight weeks in January-March. There will be two groups (one for junior-high-aged writers and one for high-school-aged writers), each open to a mximum of 25 participants, and at the end of the eight-week workshop they'll be compiling an informal 'zine that the library is planning to catalog in its collection. If you have or know a teenager with literary leanings, tell them to ask their English teacher at school for info in the next week, or check the front desk at the Davis Branch Library, the Davis Food Co-op bulletin board, or the bulletin board at the Davis Art Center for a registration flyer. Registration is first come-first serve. The workshop is offered free of charge, thanks to support from the Friends of the Library and our friends at Poets & Writers, Inc.

While you're at it, tell those teen poets to submit to VYPER, too. The next issue will be out Dec. 13 at The Book Collector, or I'll send 'em one.

Rae also announces that the Cache Creek Preserve writing workshop has now been funded again and will resume soon, albeit on a more limited basis. Watch for info on that.


Medusa is tearing her snakey hair out about a mistake she made on the early edition yesterday (that is, on the post before I fixed it)—Susan Kelly-DeWitt's poem will be posted on Writer's Almanac on MONDAY (12/11), not Saturday (12/11) as first posted. (Thanks, sharp-eyed Jane Blue, for catching this!)


•••Bistro 33 Tuesday Night Series at 3rd & F Sts., Davis, in the historic city hall. Open mic sign-up begins at 8 PM, warm-up readers at around 8:30, feature at about 8:50, followed by open mic. Contact Andy Jones for more info. This event meets every Tuesday now.

•••Or head off to a special get-away: a winter holiday with an Evening of Poetry, Wine Tasting and Music, featuring jazz pianist Alan Copeland and Guest Poet Art Weil at the MiWuk Village Inn, 24680 Highway 108, Mi Wuk Village, CA 95346 (800-549-7886). Event-only guests pay $10 (proceeds to benefit California Federation of Chaparral Poets, Inc., a state-wide non-profit organization). Or you can spend the night: Single or Double Occupancy Overnight Rooms Package (includes event) starts at $99, with upgrades available to suites and luxury rooms. See website: www.MiWukVillageInn or call direct: 800-549-7886 or 209-586-3031.

Sounds like the perfect love nest! Today's Levertov poems are all about love, too:

—Denise Levertov

The ache of marriage:

thigh and tongue, beloved,
are heavy with it,
it throbs in the teeth

We look for communion
and are turned away, beloved,
each and each

It is leviathan and we
in its belly
looking for joy, some joy
not to be known outside of

two by two in the ark of
the ache of it.


[Well, nobody said it was easy...]

—Denise Levertov

Long after you have swung back
away from me
I think you are still with me:

you come in close to the shore
on the tide
and nudge me awake the way

a boat adrift nudges the pier:
as I a pier
half-in half-out of the water?

and in the pleasure of that communion
I lose track,
the moon I watch goes down, the

tide swings you away before
I know I'm
alone again long since,

mud sucking at gray and black
timbers of me,
a light growth of green dreams drying.


—Denise Levertov

From love one takes
petal to rock and blesséd
away towards

one took thought
for frail tint and spectral
glisten, trusted
from way back that stillness,

one knew
that heart of fire, rose
at the core of gold glow,
could go down undiminished,

for love and
or if in fear knowing
the risk, knowing
what one is touching, one does it,

each part
of speech a spark
awaiting redemption, each
a virtue, a power

in abeyance unless we
give it care
our need designs in us. Then
all we have led away returns to us.


Another fine Lady of Letters, Christina Rossetti, would've been 176 years old today. Check into www.victorianweb.org and click on "authors" to read her wonderful food-sex poem, Goblin Market. They say the lady "echewed pleasure"—as if!...

—Medusa (who rarely echews anything...)

Medusa encourages poets of all ilk and ages to send their poetry, photos and art, and announcements of Northern California poetry events to kathykieth@hotmail.com for posting on this daily Snake blog. Rights remain with the poets. Previously-published poems are okay for Medusa’s Kitchen, as long as you own the rights. (Please cite publication.)