Friday, August 01, 2014

Sharp Edges of the Night

Phil Weidman, Joyce Odam, Robin Odam
at the "Tough Old Broads" reading
in Sacramento on June 14, 2014
—Photo by Ann Menebroker, Sacramento

—Amy Lowell

Why do the lilies goggle their tongues at me
When I pluck them;
And writhe, and twist,
And strangle themselves against my fingers,
So that I can hardly weave the garland
For your hair?
Why do they shriek your name
And spit at me
When I would cluster them?
Must I kill them
To make them lie still,
And send you a wreath of lolling corpses
To turn putrid and soft
On your forehead
While you dance?


—Amy Lowell

How empty seems the town now you are gone!
   A wilderness of sad streets, where gaunt walls
   Hide nothing to desire; sunshine falls
Eery, distorted, as it long had shone
On white, dead faces tombed in halls of stone.
   The whir of motors, stricken through with calls
   Of playing boys, floats up at intervals;
But all these noises blur to one long moan.
   What quest is worth pursuing? And how strange
That other men still go accustomed ways!
I hate their interest in the things they do.
   A spectre-horde repeating without change.

 Bill Gainer and Patrick Grizzell
at the "Tough Old Broads" reading
in Sacramento on June 14, 2014
—Photo by Ann Menebroker, Sacramento

—Amy Lowell

When I go away from you
The world beats dead
Like a slackened drum.
I call out for you against the jutted stars
And shout into the ridges of the wind.
Streets coming fast,
One after the other.
Wedge you away from me,
And the lamps of the city prick my eyes
So that I can no longer see your face.
Why should I leave you,
To wound myself upon the sharp edges of the night?


—Amy Lowell

I dug a grave under an oak-tree.
With infinite care, I stamped my spade
Into the heavy grass.
The sod sucked it,
And I drew it out with effort,
Watching the steel run liquid in the moonlight
As it became clear.
I stooped, and dug, and never turned,
For behind me,
On the dried leaves,
My own face lay like a white pebble,

 Laura and Kathryn Hohlwein with B.L. Kennedy
at the "Tough Old Broads" reading
in Sacramento on June 14, 2014.
At the far left are Joyce Odam, Robin Odam, and Carol Frith.
If you look closely in the far center, 
you can see Bill Gainer's hat.
—Photo by Ann Menebroker, Sacramento

Today's LittleNip:

—Amy Lowell

In the sky there is a moon and stars,
And in my garden there are yellow moths
Fluttering about a white azalea bush.


—Medusa, with thanks to Annie Menebroker for today's fun fotos!

 Annie also sent this wonderful photo, which I think
was taken in the Central Library, but we can't remember
when or by whom.
Pictured are Sacramento poets 
JoAnn Anglin, Charlene Ungstad, 
Annie Menebroker, Trina Drotar, Sandy Thomas,
and Martha Ann Blackman.