March 29, 2005

"saint & or"

Enough of eternal salvation and similarly unpleasant subjects! I present, by way of cleansing the mind's palate, Michael Farrrell's "saints & or: notes in the form of sonnets (millay effects)", from the last issue of the Boston Review. This poem is perhaps best described as imagining the result of a collaboration between twentieth-century America's greatest masters of the sonnet form, e. e. cummings and Edna St. Vincent Millay. It works better than it ought to. A stanza from the middle:

the season knows you as its own &,
the bay as it produces weed for you to;
put in a, pocket &, bring out a
hat never photographed & never; was your water drunk
the moons no, good except as hook,
to pull you back over the sands of dance,
you are not too tall to be a bird.
a sign i hope the wind ignores the
drops foreground what this is really about rain;
loss of focus &, ignorance of steps directions magpie
swoops they know something too from a different view &, ---
maybe on another day you or another a summers
day tanned, --- & feeling light youll answer who.

The Commonwealth of Letters

Posted by crshalizi at March 29, 2005 11:55 | permanent link

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