Monday, November 23, 2020

November 2020

November:

Woke up falling, wet

1963 again 

Deep nightmaring wail

        © Karen Joyce 11/23/20

                    





 

Saturday, August 29, 2020

"Wait" poem by Galway Kinnell


"Wait"


Wait, for now.

Distrust everything, if you have to.

But trust the hours. Haven’t they

carried you everywhere, up to now?

Personal events will become interesting again.

Hair will become interesting.

Pain will become interesting.

Buds that open out of season will become lovely again.

Second-hand gloves will become lovely again,

their memories are what give them

the need for other hands. And the desolation

of lovers is the same: that enormous emptiness

carved out of such tiny beings as we are

asks to be filled; the need

for the new love is faithfulness to the old.



Wait.

Don’t go too early.

You’re tired. But everyone’s tired.

But no one is tired enough.

Only wait a while and listen.

Music of hair,

Music of pain,

music of looms weaving all our loves again.

Be there to hear it, it will be the only time,

most of all to hear,

the flute of your whole existence,

rehearsed by the sorrows, play itself into total exhaustion.

~Galway Kinnell

Thursday, April 18, 2019

A poem in response to Dorothy Allison's essay

A poem in response to Dorothy Allison's essay: A Question of Class.

For Dorothy.

Courage, humor and love
Simply disappear
In the politics of They.

Despair must be lived
In a world that despises the weak.

They who hold dominion
Overcome and deny.
The impulse to forget/remember

Those who disappear into:
One pair of eyes
One set of hands
--Heard by no one.

Our tears form the ground notes
In a howling cadence of
What will not change 
In the world of We.

Courage soul: learn to wield.

         
© Karen Joyce 2019

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Spring: A Work in Progress

Spring: A Work in Progress

You are not broken - you are part of a whole universe

Humanity.

The fear of losing ground

Baseless, vulnerable and afraid.


Looking out the patio door

I am lost in the unity of the wind, green freeness,

Trees, my father

A continuum.


Plugging in, topsy-turvy

An angel on my shoulder

Stay in place, safe exploring gentleness, grace.

~Karen Joyce  04/2019



Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Perfection is never wasted in the moment - for those who are grieving still

Perfection Wasted

And another regrettable thing about death

is the ceasing of your own brand of magic,

which took a whole life to develop and market --

the quips, the witticisms, the slant

adjusted to a few, those loved ones nearest

the lip of the stage, their soft faces blanched

in the footlight glow, their laughter close to tears,

their tears confused with their diamond earrings,

their warm pooled breath in and out with your heartbeat,

their response and your performance twinned.

The jokes over the phone. The memories

packed in the rapid-access file. The whole act.

Who will do it again? That's it: no one;

imitators and descendants aren't the same.

--John Updike

Breathe 2017


Bereavement 

Just for today I'm going to treat myself with kindness

A lot easier said then done

How did we get here?

B r e a t h e.

        © Karen Joyce 2017
      

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Why are they all leaving...

Belated Bereavement

Just for today I'm going to treat myself with kindness

A lot easier said then done

How did we get so hyper-critical?

Thank god for SSRIs.


           © Karen Joyce 10/2013

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

The Armadillo by Elizabeth Bishop For Robert Lowell

The Armadillo    
                by Elizabeth Bishop

For Robert Lowell

This is the time of year

when almost every night

the frail, illegal fire balloons appear.

Climbing the mountain height,


rising toward a saint

still honored in these parts,

the paper chambers flush and fill with light

that comes and goes, like hearts.


Once up against the sky it's hard

to tell them from the stars—

planets, that is—the tinted ones:

Venus going down, or Mars,


or the pale green one.  With a wind,

they flare and falter, wobble and toss;

but if it's still they steer between

the kite sticks of the Southern Cross,


receding, dwindling, solemnly

and steadily forsaking us,

or, in the downdraft from a peak,

suddenly turning dangerous.


Last night another big one fell.

It splattered like an egg of fire

against the cliff behind the house.

The flame ran down.  We saw the pair


of owls who nest there flying up

and up, their whirling black-and-white

stained bright pink underneath, until

they shrieked up out of sight.


The ancient owls' nest must have burned.

Hastily, all alone,

a glistening armadillo left the scene,

rose-flecked, head down, tail down,


and then a baby rabbit jumped out,

short-eared, to our surprise.

So soft!—a handful of intangible ash

with fixed, ignited eyes.


Too pretty, dreamlike mimicry!

O falling fire and piercing cry

and panic, and a weak mailed fist

clenched ignorant against the sky!

One Art by Elizabeth Bishop

One Art       
        by Elizabeth Bishop

The art of losing isn't hard to master;

so many things seem filled with the intent

to be lost that their loss is no disaster.


Lose something every day. Accept the fluster

of lost door keys, the hour badly spent.

The art of losing isn't hard to master.


Then practice losing farther, losing faster:

places, and names, and where it was you meant

to travel. None of these will bring disaster.


I lost my mother's watch. And look! my last, or

next-to-last, of three loved houses went.

The art of losing isn't hard to master.


I lost two cities, lovely ones. And, vaster,

some realms I owned, two rivers, a continent.

I miss them, but it wasn't a disaster.


--Even losing you (the joking voice, a gesture

I love) I shan't have lied.  It's evident

the art of losing's not too hard to master

though it may look like (Write it!) like disaster.

Friday, June 13, 2008

A poem in response to Dorothy Allison's essay: A Question of Class.

A poem in response to Dorothy Allison's essay: A Question of Class.
For Dorothy.

Courage, humor and love

simply disappear

in the politics of They


Despair must be lived

in a world that despises the weak.

They who hold dominion

overcome and deny.


The impulse to forget/remember

those who disappear into:

one pair of eyes

one set of hands

--heard by no one.


Our tears form the ground notes

in the howling cadence of
  
what  will not change

in the nightmare world of We.


Courage soul: learn to wield.

© Karen Joyce  06/2008

2022 Haiku

2021  (Year Two) Slow down, memory maker. Dreamer: Dream a new dream - 2022

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