Depression

D
Black Kief and the Intellectual by Rosemary Tonks
Rosemary Tonks
I shall fill up that pit inside me
With my gloomiest thoughts; and then
Spread myself, prostrate, inert, on top of them.
Ah, miserable at last! Felicity.
Those who drink the sea with its fishy breath
Cannot know with what dread I gorge to death
On ideologies— bitter dogma, dialectic, creed;
H.P. sauce, ketchup, mayonnaise, chutney,
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Inventory by Gail Mazur
Gail Mazur
Clarice, the Swiss Appraiser, paces our rooms, listing furnishings
on her yellow legal pad with a Waterman pen, a microcamera.
Although I've asked why we have to do this, I forgot the answer.

The answer to why is because, inscrutable, outside of logic,
helpless, useless because. Wing chairs, a deco lamp, my mother's
cherry dining table—nothing we both loved using looks tragic.

Most nights now I sit in the den reading the colorful spines
of your art books, Fra Angelico to Zurburan, volume after volume
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Pantoum of the Great Depression by Donald Justice
Donald Justice
Our lives avoided tragedy
Simply by going on and on,
Without end and with little apparent meaning.
Oh, there were storms and small catastrophes.

Simply by going on and on
We managed. No need for the heroic.
Oh, there were storms and small catastrophes.
I don't remember all the particulars.
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Children of the Working Class by John Wieners
John Wieners
to Somes

from incarceration, Taunton State Hospital, 1972

gaunt, ugly deformed

broken from the womb, and horribly shriven
at the labor of their forefathers, if you check back

scout around grey before actual time
their sordid brains don’t work right,
pinched men emaciated, piling up railroad ties and highway
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On the Meeting of Garcia Lorca and Hart Crane by Philip Levine
Philip Levine
Brooklyn, 1929. Of course Crane’s
been drinking and has no idea who
this curious Andalusian is, unable
even to speak the language of poetry.
The young man who brought them
together knows both Spanish and English,
but he has a headache from jumping
back and forth from one language
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Hymn to Life by James Schuyler
James Schuyler
The wind rests its cheek upon the ground and feels the cool damp
And lifts its head with twigs and small dead blades of grass
Pressed into it as you might at the beach rise up and brush away
The sand. The day is cool and says, “I’m just staying overnight.”
The world is filled with music, and in between the music, silence
And varying the silence all sorts of sounds, natural and man made:
There goes a plane, some cars, geese that honk and, not here, but
Not so far away, a scream so rending that to hear it is to be
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80
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In Golden Gate Park That Day . . . by Lawrence Ferlinghetti
Lawrence Ferlinghetti
In Golden Gate Park that day
a man and his wife were coming along
thru the enormous meadow
which was the meadow of the world
He was wearing green suspenders
and carrying an old beat-up flute
in one hand
while his wife had a bunch of grapes
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Trollius and trellises by Charles Bukowski
Charles Bukowski
of course, I may die in the next ten minutes
and I’m ready for that
but what I’m really worried about is
that my editor-publisher might retire
even though he is ten years younger than
I.
it was just 25 years ago (I was at that ripe
old age of 45)
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Cold Calls (War Music, Continued) by Christopher Logue
Christopher Logue
Many believe in the stars.


Take Quinamid
The son of a Dardanian astrologer
Who disregarded what his father said
And came to Troy in a taxi.

Gone.



Odysseus to Greece:

“Hector has never fought this far from Troy.
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The Lake in Central Park by Jay Wright
Jay Wright
It should have a woman's name,
something to tell us how the green skirt of land
has bound its hips.
When the day lowers its vermilion tapestry over the west ridge,
the water has the sound of leaves shaken in a sack,
and the child's voice that you have heard below
sings of the sea.

By slow movements of the earth's crust,
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Madam’s Past History by Langston Hughes
Langston Hughes
My name is Johnson—
Madam Alberta K.
The Madam stands for business.
I’m smart that way.

I had a
HAIR-DRESSING PARLOR
Before
The depression put
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