Category Archives: Poetry

For Sunday Three God Poems – Akbar, Tsvetaeva, Crozier

American/Iranian poet Kaveh Akbar Learning to Pray My father moved patiently cupping his hands beneath his chin, kneeling on a janamaz then pressing his forehead to a circle of Karbala clay. Occasionally he’d glance over at my clumsy mirroring, my too-big Packers T-shirt and pebble-red shorts, and smile a little, despite himself. Bending there with […]

With Death Looming, Two Astonishing Poems of Presence – Mandelstam and Stafford

AND I WAS ALIVE And I was alive in the blizzard of the blossoming pear, Myself I stood in the storm of the bird-cherry tree. It was all leaflife and starshower, unerring, self-shattering power, And it was all aimed at me. What is this dire delight flowering fleeing always earth? What is being? What is […]

Tom Crawford – R.I.P. – 1939-May 2018

How to Draw a Better Bird Resist eloquence. Get mad. If your bird is the snowy Clark’s Grebe, if that’s your bird, the one out there sitting on its eggs in a floating nest – stunning bird, serene bird – if that’s all you see, then it’s no good. You might just as well take […]

Lorna Crozier – Her Mouth to the Lion’s Mouth – Next Week, Her Latest Poetry Collection Arrives

FALSE GODS These are the ones who show up at the party, grains of rapture bagged and tucked up their sleeves, heaven’s golden mead in flasks in their secret pockets. They’re everyone’s best nightmare. They sit in the front of the club, stuff the biggest notes in the G-strings of the strippers. At the gym […]

When Poetry Arrives – Neruda and Urrea

Poetry And it was at that age . . . poetry arrived in search of me. I don’t know, I don’t know where it came from, from winter or a river. I don’t know how or when, no, they were not voices, they were not words, not silence, but from a street it called me, […]

Ursula K. Le Guin (1929-2018) – Part Two of a Two Part Series

……something that I think poems do, is observe the world and make it new again. Kevin Young (Poetry Editor of the New Yorker) from The New Yorker Poetry Podcasts, July 27th, 2018. The Small Indian Pestle at the Applegate House Dense, heavy, fine-grained, dark basalt worn river-smooth all round, a cylinder with blunt round ends, […]

When Death Came She Was Ready – A Deathbed Poem by Anna Swir

Tomorrow They Will Carve Me Death came and stood by me. I said: I am ready. I am lying in the surgery clinic in Krakow. Tomorrow they will carve me. There is much strength in me. I can live, can run, dance, and sing. All that is in me, but if necessary I will go. […]

Life: Beautiful or Monstrous or Both? Three Poems by Swir, Mahon and Gilbert

Poetry Reading I’m curled into a ball like a dog that is cold. Who will tell me why I was born, why this monstrosity called life. The telephone rings. I have to give a poetry reading. I enter. A hundred people, a hundred pairs of eyes. They look, they wait. I know for what. I […]

Built to Bend – A Poem by Jala al-Din Rumi and One in Response by Me (Richard Osler)

  Today like every other day, we wake up empty and frightened. Don’t open the door to the study and begin reading. Take down a musical instrument. Let the beauty we love Be what we do. There are hundred’s of ways to kneel and kiss the earth. Jalal al-Din Rumi (1207-1273) from The Big Red […]

The Bigness of Small Poems – #41 in a Series – Adelia Prado Unvarnished

Object of Affection What I have to tell you is of such high order and so precious that if I kept to myself it would feel like stealing; the asshole is beautiful! Make what you will of this gift. As for me – grateful to know this, I feel not forgiveness but love. Adelia Prado […]