Sunday, April 6, 2014

National Poetry Month, Day 6: Things that go dark with the night

You know I couldn't let a week of National Poetry Month go by without sharing a little Ray. Since it's Sunday we won't go all heavy on you and share 'On an Old Photograph of My Son,' no, that would be unchristian. So how about this: 'Hummingbird [for Tess]':

Suppose I say summer,
write the word “hummingbird,”
put in an envelope,
take it down the hill
to the box. When you open
my letter you will recall
those days and how much,
just how much, I love you. (All of Us: The Collected Poems, by Raymond Carver)

It's good to share a poem that mentions summer, and hummingbirds, and love, because our prompt from Writer's Digest Poem a Day challenge is, well, dark:
... write a night poem. Vampires and werewolves? Cool. Clubbing and saloons? You got it. Lovers together alone? Right. Ex-lovers alone on their own? Sure thing. You figure out your night poem–and, yes, (k)night poems are fine too.
So we found ourselves writing a poem we had already written ... in an Escher kind of way and that seemed dumb. Regular readers reader might have a memory of a version of this one. Revision is good.

Sleeping with Stephen King

Last night --
the wine, the hour, the want? --
I became quite small, and took refuge
in the crowded bookcase,
slipping between the covers, the dark
dense with a descant
come, come
climb with Krakauer, Everest
full of snow and death above us,
a summit calling come,
come touch the sky,
Anne Morrow Lindbergh,
fly and cry and write your way
here before us, stands the great
and mighty Ozymandias, Shelley
and I bow and laugh
he takes my hand, we
dance a reel, McMurtry and I,
until the music fades
at the last picture show,
the plains wind blows through
the open roof, the stars
should be high above us;
but it’s full dark, no stars,
and oh, Stephen, take my hand,
stand by me;
I don’t like this hotel, this hall, these rooms
are cold and dark and I pull a sheet
over my eyes, folding inside,
slipping the words between
the pages of a battered notebook

dreaming on.

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