Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Tawny Light

I am reading She Walks Into the Sea, poems by Patricia Clark.

Oh, beautiful!

This is a book that fits my "categories of existence" so well my heart might burst.

Random Coinciday:

Yesterday morning, I wrote about the blue hibiscus. Then, in the afternoon, I read about the red hibiscus in Clark's poem "Tawny Light."  It begins:

If I could be carried back to this, the just-before-dark
            peach explosion of light touching the trees, and then
                        the tips and serrated leaves on the wasteland chicory,

if I could be lifted back to this before I die,…

And then the poem is one long sentence, suspended, sustained, as is the sunset, but inevitably dropping into night. And in it is "a red, tissue-thin shred / of hibiscus."

Also the "wasteland chicory" I love, which is blooming now beside cornfields and in median strips in my town, and Queen Anne's lace.

Fat Tuesday:

Not so random, since RHINO sent me the book, in a box with others, "Tawny Light" was first published in RHINO 2009 (where I was an editor, reviewer, and advisor in the past). Yesterday, I opened the box again, and it was like Christmas! And that is the paradox of...

Slattern Day:

I'm behind on my attention to these books because I cleaned up! That is, to protect and keep them safe, I stacked them neatly in a box in my closet and got distracted by my life, other tasks and duties and reading. If I had, in a more slatternly fashion, left them to collect dust in a stack on the floor, I would have read this book sooner. But, given the synchronicity of chicory, lace, and red hibiscus, this was the perfect time.

But I do want to keep reading and reviewing or drawing attention to RHINO poets and their books, as the magazine used to have a review section at the rear, RHINO Reads, now a reading series in Evanston. You can follow news and events in RHINO's Big Horn Blog.

Poetry Someday:

See above! But also, for poets, remember that RHINO has been reading submissions since April 1, and their reading period ends October 1. So, if you haven't already, send them something soon, as you gather packets to send the journals just beginning to read in fall!

To get a copy of She Walks Into the Sea, go here or here! To get that red hibiscus, go here.


Anonymous said...

now i understand my slackerly ways.

and on the subject of one thing leads me back to you category:

while hiking last weekend, i pointed out queen anne's lace to my companion, except i could not remember the name. he said, oh queen patricia's lace, the queen no one remembered until we named the lace after her.

but in my house, i have a sprig of said lace dried and framed, hanging on a wall. it attracts a certain butterfly (says the handwritten notes also framed with the sprig). now i'm thinking it attracts kirk coincidays.

Kathleen said...

I understand you completely, Sherry! I also used to have a dried sprig of said lace, closed into a tiny nest, as Patricia Clark would say--oh! in her TWO-sentence poem, still as sustained as a sunset--"not / large enough for a warbler or a wren, though a bee / could crawl in, sleeping for a few hours / in a swaying stalk-top bed, canopied, // dreaming of pollen, nectar sticky on pistils, all things sweet.

And now I am also thinking of Titania, queen of the fairies, in A Midsummer Night's Dream....

Collagemama said...

Thank you for the beautiful painting on the book cover. It is helping me get psyched to teach art again.

Kathleen said...

Yes, isn't it gorgeous? It's called Winter Sea, by J. M. Eadon, with more at www.jennyeadon.co.uk (according to back cover of book). More on Clark tomorrow!

Hannah Stephenson said...

WOOOOOH. Oh, that poem...killer.

Stacked books that I keep shuffling around or knocking over---I hear ya, dear.

Kathleen said...

I have made organizational stacks, at least!

SarahJane said...

That sounds like a good book. Great cover, too.