A POEM A DAY

I'm just happy to be here.

Tag: william carlos williams

11/30:  A WITNESS

            It is difficult
to get the news from poems
                        yet men die miserably every day
                                                for lack
of what is found there.

Asphodel, That Greeny Flower [excerpt], William Carlos Williams

April 11, 2021
The President wants Gun Control but not everyone
wants Guns Controlled. Murder is still police brutality.
Another black man was murdered in Minnesota.
His name was Daunte Wright.
A Black and Latinx Army Lieutenant was pepper sprayed.
His name was Caron Nazario.
Coronavirus has a vaccine but not everyone wants to be vaccinated.
The world holds its breath every time it reads a headline.
I’ve never been
to Myanmar but a military coup is killing its people.
DMX died days ago.
A year into the pandemic, over half a million have died.
A five year old
child arrives at the southern border with nothing
but a number and a name.
The State of Georgia rewrote its laws
to make it harder for black and brown
people to vote. Texas is doing the same thing.
Amazon workers demand a union
but not everyone wants their labor organized.
A new COVID variant has
once again entered the blood stream of society.
If the media is a monster,
its because we feed it.
No matter what happens,
don’t fall for the click bait.
There’s too many days ahead
to stop paying attention now. I want
some small piece of news to be found in this poem.
Let it serve as
the reminder I need:
If I wish to write, I must first witness.

5/30: THAT VIOLENT BUSINESS

“…woe is translatable to joy if light
becomes darkness and darkness light,
as it will—“
-William Carlos Williams

On the day of the spring equinox,
I fed myself strawberries, ate black plums,
someone called me handsome and I hummed
to myself in the kitchen.

A quick note on the black plums:
the first time, I grabbed one was an accident
had to be the summer before last
the one I spent alone in my apartment
baffled by want, a linguist lost in love’s speeches,
studying for four months to take a test
so I could go to school for three more years
then take another test at the end of it. Anyways.
That next season, I read a poem out loud
to three other English majors in my Modernism class
about stolen plums, the deceptive sweetness
of language, the immediate contact with the present,
the need to reach through with what is wholly you,
and in that moment, the poet comes to know
the image is more useful
than what it represents & that’s what I’m saying!
I bite into a black plum not by my lonesome
but swirling with significance, a cloud of moments,
the long day stretched out like a highway
I cannot help but get stuck in the traffic
of my own imagination, impavid and impatient
& imagine me humming a number
equal parts lovely and somber, with plum breath
and the confidence of a compliment.
I think of all the mouths I let on my flesh,
eyes closed and touch filled with expiration,
like they expect the sweetest thing in season,
hoping for a brief revival just by holding my body, and
how this explains their reason for leaving, because who doesn’t understand
pleasure, who doesn’t eat a plum on the first day of spring
and throw the pit in the garbage, forgetting forgiveness,
you know, that violent business.