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Saturday, October 19, 2019

Poems 'Like An Endless Film'

I think of something quite different from a snapshot. I know of a lot of poems, some very fine ones, that are like snapshots, but I'm more interested in poetry that is like an endless film, long stories, things that weave together many different strands, like a big piece of cloth, not like a photograph.” – Robert Bringhurst 

Born on Oct. 16, 1946, Bringhurst is a Canadian poet, typographer and author noted for his translations of works from Haida and Navajo and from classical Greek and Arabic.    He is the author or editor of 21 books of poetry and 16 books of prose, including the definitive The Elements of Typographic Style, a reference book of typefaces, glyphs and the visual and geometric arrangement of type.    For Saturday’s Poem, here is Bringhurst’s,

                                    These Poems, She Said
These poems, these poems,
these poems, she said, are poems
with no love in them. These are the poems of a man
who would leave his wife and child because
they made noise in his study. These are the poems
of a man who would murder his mother to claim
the inheritance. These are the poems of a man
like Plato, she said, meaning something I did not
comprehend but which nevertheless
offended me. These are the poems of a man
who would rather sleep with himself than with women,
she said. These are the poems of a man
with eyes like a drawknife, with hands like a pickpocket's
hands, woven of water and logic
and hunger, with no strand of love in them. These
poems are as heartless as birdsong, as unmeant
as elm leaves, which if they love love only
the wide blue sky and the air and the idea
of elm leaves. Self-love is an ending, she said,
and not a beginning. Love means love
of the thing sung, not of the song or the singing.
These poems, she said....
You are, he said,
That is not love, she said rightly.

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