Author Topic: seven reasons, rachel barenblat  (Read 569 times)

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Offline illiterati

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seven reasons, rachel barenblat
« on: May 12, 2012, 05:58 PM »
this one's beautiful, deserves a post all its own:

Seven reasons / Psalm 147 [Rachel Barenblat]


SEVEN REASONS (PSALM 147)


You rebuild your city with our hands
and gather our scattered sparks.
You darn the heels of our hearts
and comfort us with bandages.

You smear sunrise across the heavens
like raspberry jam
and coax every blade of grass
to emerge from the dark comfort of soil.
And you love our fragility
not our particle physics
nor the bridges we labored to plant
across the inlets your glaciers carved.

You lay down ice like glass
and frost like lace on our windowpanes
and then you breathe a January thaw
and our frozen places melt.

Offline Kay

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Re: seven reasons, rachel barenblat
« Reply #1 on: May 12, 2012, 06:59 PM »
This is beautiful and I am going to read more of her poetry.

Thanks for the lead.  :rose

Offline illiterati

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Re: seven reasons, rachel barenblat
« Reply #2 on: May 12, 2012, 07:02 PM »
going to try your hand at a psalm of some sort?

Offline Kay

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Re: seven reasons, rachel barenblat
« Reply #3 on: May 12, 2012, 07:04 PM »
I should. I've been studying King David for years. For me, a psalm

needs to come during a time of quiet solitude and deep emotion. But that could

simply be my idea of a psalm. I would like to write one, maybe I have

already and it is lost in my files!

Offline illiterati

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Re: seven reasons, rachel barenblat
« Reply #4 on: May 12, 2012, 07:07 PM »


great - it was nice to have a sort of collective energy with poem a day,

but that's getting old.

maybe we can get something going with this...

Offline Kay

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Re: seven reasons, rachel barenblat
« Reply #5 on: May 12, 2012, 07:09 PM »
I think a poem a day is a good thing but not many people can keep at it.

here is an old one of sorts that I wrote.


you sit like the deer by the water
your hand trembles, open, your eyes fixed
the trees around you and the high grasses
sway as if they take their breath from your movement
I sit close and cannot speak
the love between us is holy and deep
like the river Jordan.  In my quiet time,
I seek to know you.  I draw close
my hands hold enough of air, and light
and earth but yet have nothing to offer.

Offline illiterati

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Re: seven reasons, rachel barenblat
« Reply #6 on: May 12, 2012, 07:14 PM »
very nice,

here's one i did a few years ago (looking at it now, i'd probably chop the last half -- or maybe the whole thing. it's always difficult to look at old poetry - not because it is worse than what i'm currently writing, but because in it i see more clearly the ways in which my current writing sucks):


how long, o lord, will i shake with indecision?
how long, o lord, will my wet skin crawl with shingles?
how long will my eyelight stain and shutter?
how long will my mewly-mind mutter? and my senses bleet?

how long, o lord, will i be blue to you in a snowbank?
how long will my paper lips rasp against strangeness?
or my brittle pulse beat in fits and stutters?

Selah.

the Wolf came to cuddle your darlings:
his teeth caressed the feet of your dear ones
and closed around the throats of your lambs.

but you broke the teeth of the lion, lord.
the young wolf you ripped to tiny pieces.
the hyena you reduced to a pith.

you carry home all your scattered
and your darlings are not so distant.

i will sing with the lips of the happy,
and shout with the crash of the throng:

my god is a flame that remembers his ashes,
and redeems all his embers at dawn.

i will rise with the morning
and shake off the night with its longing.
he washes the mud from my blood-laced feet.

has there ever been one like my father?
has there ever been another beside him?
his face shines softly on those who seek him.
his Voice is a life-gushing river.

Selah.

Offline Kay

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Re: seven reasons, rachel barenblat
« Reply #7 on: May 12, 2012, 07:43 PM »
I wouldn't say your writing sucks at all. 

This is very well done.  I really like this part here:


Quote
how long will my eyelight stain and shutter?
how long will my mewly-mind mutter? and my senses bleet?


 I would encourage you to keep writing these. I mean if it's something you'd want to pursue.

Offline illiterati

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Re: seven reasons, rachel barenblat
« Reply #8 on: May 12, 2012, 08:12 PM »
yes i'm being histrionic here - i don't actually think my writing sucks.

i just meant that certain writerly vulnerabilities are more glaring in retrospect, and not because they'e since disappeared.

but thanks. as i said, i plan of fiddling around with the form in some way over the next few days.

i hope others will join in.

-matt

Offline jdstaley

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Re: seven reasons, rachel barenblat
« Reply #9 on: May 15, 2012, 09:02 AM »
great supplant on the gerunds and
the way adjectives or non-verbs are
used to "frost" our cold "places"
rather than the usual.

I like this a lot!

All Ways.

Offline illiterati

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Re: seven reasons, rachel barenblat
« Reply #10 on: May 15, 2012, 12:33 PM »
hey - haven't seen you around before.

i like that you've singled out the experimental forum!

what's your interest / investment in experimentalism?

-matt


oh --- and make sure to experiment with the psalm form.

love to see what you come up with.