Dedicated to my boxers in Writers get Violent, who really beat the shit out of each other:
To you the boxers,
When you hear it, don’t ask yourself for whom the gong tolls, it tolls for thee.
Which means you.
YOU the winner
you who will win JUST tonight,
this is a sport where it is better to put aside any Cartesian doubt, where the only certainty that counts is that of a big clout right on the nose. There is no point to wonder why. There is no point to pursue the search for truth, when the only truth that counts is that of the winners. That goes for war, sadly, and for the smallest type of conflict.
So, don’t think about it, just knock him down and enjoy the natural spectacle of seeing a boxer slowly fall backward, straight as a shaft, following the trajectory of a toppled oak, of hearing him crash to earth and the numerical tick-tocking of a grown child that has become a man,
but who still hasn’t stopped counting to ten
to give some meaning to this game.
To YOU the loser,
or is better to say you who’ll lose JUST this time,
when you’ll be there lying down,
your cheek stuck on the ground,
don’t ask yourself why YOU got it, YOU got it for everyone of us, the cowards,
your face got it for all these faces, your eyes saw it for all these eyes,
like a diamond that refracts everything around it into a thousand brilliant slivers and glares,
like a lake that is mirrored in every raindrop when it rains,
a limpid silvery lake that reflects every face, you absorbed every punch and every mirrored feeling, connected with those punches, we felt. You’ve been battered from our fears, sorrows, greed, wonder, like a human god listening to everyone’s prayer at the same time, you’ve been worn out by OUR emotion, you’ve been defeated by YOUR empathy.
When you gonna be here, laying down, don’t ask yourself if you are dead, you’re not dead.
You’re too alive.
I've been working with Kathleen Spivack as my writing coach for 5 years. She's great, and won the Allen Ginsberg Memorial Poetry Prize last year. Blurb below from Village Voice bookshop's website.
A History of Yearning
Tuesday, March 15th at 7pm
The Village Voice Bookshop is proud to invite you to meet Kathleen Spivack who will read from and discuss her new collection of poems, A History of Yearning.
Kathleen Spivack is the author of a number of previous volumes of poetry including Flying Inland,The Jane Poems and Moments of Past Happiness as well as a novel, Unspeakable Things. Her writing has been featured in such publications as The New Yorker and The Paris Review. She has also written about her friend, Robert Lowell, and other poets of his time such as Elizabeth Bishop, Anne Sexton and Sylvia Plath. She teaches American Literature and Creative Writing in both Paris and Boston.
Most of the poems in A History of Yearning begin with paintings and photographs, and rise from them as fragrance rises from spring flowers after a hard winter, a gift to us from language that survives and blooms and brings us pleasures we hardly know how to name. Kathleen Spivack has created another in her series of award-winning books, a crowning achievement that lifts darkness and light and mixes them with consummate skill, passion, and the wide experience of a docent in the living museum of our time.
A History of Yearning won the 2010 Sow’s Ear Poetry Chapbook Award, and the London Book Festival Poetry First Prize and Allen Ginsberg Memorial Poetry Award in 2011.
Crowded Spoken Word, we are starting earlier but we always finish at Midnight!
Igor Limansky, first time on our stage, opens it:
“We are drunk and naked, dancing
by the light of non-decision
in shoes made perfect by the moon.”
Marie Claire Calmus, Trelys Duprè,
J.D. reading about the Saintsimonians for the last time before going back to the coldest Alaska we can imagine, Moe Seager, Arash, Troy, Clain, Alberto introducing the first fight of “Writers Get Violent”:
Chris The Vicious Newens VS the No Meat Eater Peter Cow Killer Brown,
who read a remix of the notorious Cassius Clay’s poem “I’m The Greatest”:
Yes, I’m the man this poem is about, I’ll be Champ of the world,
there isn’t a doubt.
Here I predict Mr. Newens dismemberment
I’ll hit him so hard, he’ll wonder where Mars and April went.
If you want to see some poetry in motion, three days later:
Britney closed part I with
“you were satisfying like peanutbutter
sweet like agave limbs unfurling into wafts of coriander
(manna my dear)”.
Started with Susie, followed by Kyle. If you want to taste his songwriting:
Robert Cole, Chris Newen’s short play featuring Jess Sleazy Martinez Granatt and Kevin the Cow, Betty without the Box. Mimi kicked asses.
She’s her speciality indeed:
If you want to laugh more and more info, go on her facebook page:
Amy, and then the Press Conference for thursday’s second fight: Kirsten Johnny Bastard Foster VS Beth Poisonous Peacock Jervis. Troy with his famous love poem: “Sweet Tender Buttfinger”, Moe , Julian craving for “Money”, Rufo Quintavalle, Arash. Final French Poetry Lessons by Bastien, by Bubu. It’s midnight. Poetry homeless go home. Come back next monday.
In Belleville, at Culture Rapide.