Sunday poetry…

and I went to the Sunday night reading at the Java Hut in Worcester, preceded by dinner at the Chopsticks chinese restaurant ( and , just across the street. We both had lots of coffee and lots of sugar in the form of a volcano sundae, or whatever they’re called, and I for one am not feeling so good in my tummy.

just left in a cloud of weariness. She decided to come to poetry and stay over last night, and I’m glad she did, because it meant I got another night of holding her in my arms. Still, 5:00am arrives much too early for both of us, and she had to be on the road by 5:30am to get to work on time. I wish we could figure out a better plan for her staying over, or that we had planned to go into Boston — but it always means taking two cars, because no one can take her into Boston or take me back to Connecticut. How awkward.

Evert Eden did an amazing set. Urban did two pieces that amazed me; his first got completely out of “I” mode, and his second mostly was in second person. was in town unexpectedly and delightfully, and I was very glad to see him; school stuff had prevented me from saying a proper good-bye. He did a great piece as well. <lj user=moris was sick, so Jon helped out with the hosting. did his “roses are red//violets are blue” piece, which is one of my favorites. did a piece on the joys of doggerel… I gave him a copy of my piece, “In Defense of Blank Verse” that I wrote in response to the poetry critic (“and he turns into an asshole! talks shit but can’t shit talk”) told me about, who complained about how no one uses obscure Welsh forms or feminine rhyme schemes or feminine rhyme schemes any more.

In Defense of Blank Verse
a cywydd llosgrynog

“The poetic art is failing,”
hear the meter-men all railing
how it’s despairing to see
Rhyme’s rules are but rarely followed;
Meter’s spat or shat, not swallowed;
Odes out-bellowed with great glee

by fanatic fans of freedom
just blanking along at random
’bout some madam who’s so hot
you’ve started singing in tandem
with yourself — but they think you’re dumb
’cause your poem sounds like rot!

Yet who has time? Making meter
can’t always make verses sweeter;
You’d forget her in a snap
and her curves as soft as butter
as she dates and then does Peter–
this new Busta Rhymes of rap —

while you struggle with your rhyming
and an inept sense of timing…
“Is this living?” You must ask.
Stuck in a garret writing,
in a form that’s unforgiving
leaves you raving: “why this task?”

So I’ve writ this sly creation
of an old Welsh derivation
to make motion that blank verse
need not arouse such bad feeling
or set everyone to groaning
and bemoaning the dread curse

that meter’s a Maginot Line,
a wall the in-crowd can define,
seting what’s fine and what’s bad.
The dreadful dungeon that is rhyme
can itself seem a kind of crime
with not a fine paid — How Sad!

But Poetry is plebian;
we need no epic Crimean
nor North Korean war-songs…
Poetry is epicurean,
erotic, Dionysian;
Its Apollonian wrongs

hang on the ear most dismally.
Blank verse could ring more merrily,
I say, verily, to you:
Content matters much more mightily
mystically and masterfully;
metrically makes it less true.

…We could see some more elegance,
free verses should cavort and dance
as rhymes can entrance the ear…
Yet obey no gray eminence;
let no youth put you on defense,
make you sad or tense, for hear:

Verse belongs to them that write it:
strict construction only slights it;
and though some fight it as ill…
Poets write as they have heard it;
hearers hear it if they like it;
the best of it we hear still —

Poets never write to please ye,
you who find critiquing easy,
but for the ear in their mind.
Some choose forms to rhyme more fully;
Some find meter makes them merry;
All write as their heart is inclined!

I’ve just realized today is the 14th, and by tomorrow I’m supposed to have this formal curriculum proposal completed for my three classes for next year. Part of me wants to put it off until tomorrow. Part of me knows I should work on it this morning and get it mostly done. I’m leaving early Wednesday for SpiritFire, and is coming too, and maybe our friend Craig as well. I feel a little overwhelmed in getting us ready to go, and I don’t want to have to do this curriculum bit by tomorrow — but it has to be done.

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