Friday, September 9, 2011

"One and One: The Obscene Gravity of [the] Pear" - A Poem Curated By Joseph A. W. Quintela

One and One: The Obscene Gravity of [the] Pear

A Poem Curated by Joseph A. W. Quintela


It is fascinating how photographs capture selves that we want
[or don’t want] in certain moments.

     -Rachel Eliza Griffiths, Mule & Pear
(approximation, extracted from reading comment)


I have a habit that a lot of my heroes are dead.

     -Paulie Lipman, The Obscene Gravity of Silence
(approximation, extracted from reading comment)


When I tell

where the blood is, my

too-often, bull-mouth,


hissing, breeze-through-the-girl,

barbed teeth

coil. Part his lips,

thick as autumn vines, to grin flint at me

like a spike. Keep light out. And I must take

my own hand, all willow wispy,

as if it were a stave, but nowhere as strong,

brokenly bleating, Let the light through.


A thousand-throated neighbors

call beneath me

             (nobody listen),

call me to say,

The men have left, except for the reporters,

the women like it here,

piled like a beige heap of trees,


to be ironed & mended. Cold shadow

of 3 fathers, all mothers have left,

but in their shadow

let me be the chandelier.


Family: where your body,

in its cradle, shared a name with

me. And

there is far more blood between us, if I'm answering

you. He

was soil and light in my lungs

where screams fired me back to nothing.

Truly, I wear golden lamps,

after midight raised me;

shaped us into lips of light opening

for his divine imagination

(& we would plague

again). The things

I have lived hold me now.

I am no more. Life,

a frament. And wish.

His sense of purpose. The clouds behind me.


The last body expands,

indifferent as the first luminous stain.


All I wanted was to tell him,

You, the others, Mr. President,

you, and the rest of your kind: be near me.

Us: where the blood tipped on the brink

learned beauty.

I was blood at their feet.

Stir the leaves & tell me

where the blood is going. Ancient,

bull-bellied clouds (slow death).

Our hips bleed

into surrender. Girl & woman:

so barbed.

Coil at the very root.

Thick as autumn vines, the barest glimpse

of my--(keep the light out!)--

own hand. I am 60 years old.


The forest, as if it were a stave of notes

grown crooked, brokenly bleating

in the shadow of a thousand-throated

third. A preserved hummingbird.

Listen to us: The tourists

weakened branches say to

whither and return to dirt. The men have left,

the women (I am not a murderer!) have

been piled. I've only ever loved.


I am a parolee, to be ironed and mended.

I have left you.

I am no one's daughter.      Blood

(Our)                                                   drips from the chandelier


[Joseph A. W. Quintela's Note: The poem presented here is a composite (or mash-up) of The Two Elizas by Rachel Eliza Griffith and Squeaky by Paulie Lipman. The title is a composite of the titles of their most recent collections. The two poets performed together on 8 September, 2011 as featured poets at Michael Geffner’s Inspired Word hosted at One and One in New York City. Poems used with the permission of the poets.]


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