Being in Pop Century is just a shocking reminder how different I am than I was the first time I came here, worlds ago.
It rains in April, I believe,
because spring must balance
the dappled light, the blue-tint
haze of a relieving breeze
(a lover’s hand beneath the shirt
running gently where it may),
with its greying contemplation.
It must shut out the warmth,
the orchestral movements
of its parts with a medicinal
gloom, albeit devoid of poison,
to offer up a counterpoint,
to let the major key ring
in soft reverberation.
On these grey shores, each of us becomes
a lantern holder on the shore,
custodial stars for passing ships
to find safe harbor in the bay,
three AM automobile fires
on the long arm of the interstate:
Operatic traumas played out
from a plastic distance.
We ache for the aching of it all,
we see ourselves as giants
chained to dirt, other great bodies
far off, muddled black by horizon.
I think, once, there was a chance
for the multitudes of the season
to save us. That time has passed.
We are what we are on this hour,
contained within, but the rot has not
set in, we still know what is called love
but through a window-glass, praising
the rain but afraid to step outside,
believing what we wear, what armor
we have chosen for the day, to be more
than the feeling of spring, the embrace
of April in her mourning and her grace,
her minor keys, her echoed kiss,
her loving, strengthful silence.
Hearing someone trying to climb into your window is the quickest way to kill your poetic spirit.
I speak German and can understand his original writing. You have no idea how fantastic this guy’s stuff is!!!!! His manipulation of the language is beyond phenomenal.
I envy you immensely. I have a billingual collection of his work I’m currently working through and the English translation is extraordinary. I continually look over at the German pages and desperately want to hear it as it was intended and appreciate everything he’s doing. There’s such incredible space in his work, space and longing and beautiful language, I can’t imagine how much richer it must be in German.
I think true loneliness will only ever end when it is ended on our own terms. We can be offered an escape by potential lovers, by friends, by our careers or community, but it has to come from within. We need to want to step out into the light, we need to believe we are being received fully and not only as the person they expect us to be. I’m sorry you’re struggling, anonymous. I’m always here to talk.
Writing a poem because of tonight, because of Rilke, because this migraine, this pain, this water bottle, this darkness, this incredible sense that I am unfathomably alone in this world and this strange comfort I am finding in it all.
These self-mastered figures know: “We can go this far,Rainer Maria Rilke, First Elegy, Duino Elegies (translated by Stephen Mitchell)
this is ours, to touch one another this lightly; the gods
can press down harder upon us. But that is the gods’ affair.”
I live in a beautiful city.
Just napped on a borderline professional level, shit was wild. I feel so disoriented it’s like I’ve been reborn.
This is my voice,
this is my hope
on a late-night bridge
crossing to the island,
this is my body, it is
a star, feel, it makes
its own heat, I think
you are the same as me,
burning deep & quiet,
colliding like two tides.
This is a song, you see,
a song we know in fragments,
and we can teach other
how to heal, to enjoy the rain,
to ape at being whole
like we were told to be,
long before they broke us,
long before tonight, long
before the hope felt right.