Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Hello, Insomnia (3)

(A theme begins to emerge)

Unfortunately, there is no prize for staying up this late this many days in a row. Because I'd win it. Definitely. Maybe the prize is being close to delirious. That and a quarter will buy me a gumball.

I am thinking about my up-coming trip to Boston on the 19th, and thus, thinking about the legacy of Boston writers, one of which is Anne Sexton. There's a lot to say about Boston and about Boston artists & writers, but I'll have to file that topic under Things to Write About When Awake. Here's the first Sexton poem that comes to mind, the only one I can quote...

For John, Who Begs Me Not to Enquire Further

Not that it was beautiful,
but that, in the end, there was
a certain sense of order there;
something worth learning
in that narrow diary of my mind,
in the commonplaces of the asylum
where the cracked mirror
or my own selfish death
outstared me.
And if I tried
to give you something else,
something outside of myself,
you would not know
that the worst of anyone
can be, finally,
an accident of hope.
I tapped by own head;
it was glass, an inverted bowl.
It is a small thing
to rage in your own bowl.
At first it was private.
Then it was more than myself;
it was you, or your house,
or your kitchen.
And if you turn away
because there is no lesson here
I will hold my awkward bowl,
with all its cracked stars shining
like a complicated lie,
and fasten a new skin around it
as if I were dressing an orange
or a strange sun.
Not that it was beautiful,
but that I found some order there.
There ought to be something special
for someone
in this kind of hope.
This is something I would never find
in a lovelier place, my dear,
though your fear is anyone's fear,
like an invisible veil between us all...
and sometimes in private,
my kitchen, your kitchen,
my face, your face.

5 comments:

a day in the life... said...

oh i love this piece.

robby (onceuponabookblog) said...

Anne Sexton is such a beautiful writer. Definately one of my favorite poets. Boston is my favorite city, an hour from home. Have a good time. :]

sophie klahr said...

Thanks, Robby!

(and, Pssst - part of why I'm going to Boston when I'm going is because Nick Flynn is giving a reading to promote his new book "The Ticking is the Bomb." If you don't already know of Flynn, check out his books "Some Ether" and "Another Bullshit Night in Suck City.")

christina sestina said...

oh -- hi, also this: where when when is the flynn?!! excitement.

okay. glad i stumbled.

later, gator. :)

sophie klahr said...

Nick's page should link you to the Boston reading:
http://www.nickflynn.org/events.htm

Say hello if you end up coming - I may be manning the merch table...