October 05, 2007

OPEN SEASON

to know someone who writes
is to be like fish in a stream
and not know whether to expect
gill-tickling
or belly-up blasting

—Helen Pavlin
____
originally appeared in "Collected Poems" in 1993.

Posted by dwaber at 01:04 PM

October 04, 2007

METAMORPHOSIS OF THE POET

Kangaroos, they say,
have the most efficient
water-conservation system.
You see them sip the dew
and know theyíll not waste good water
flushing out their kidneys.

From novel to short story
to poem
I now require to distil
in ever more concentrated form.

In this age of conservation,
will there be those who want
the sparse
pellets of uric acid
I now produce?
Or do they only wish
to study the precise calibre of hair,
the porosity of bone
the fox-scats
which yield
biography,
appetite and habitat?

Frugal of future life, too
the kangaroo always carries
a foetus
ready to grow or not
as conditions permit.
Like a poem.

—Helen Pavlin
____
originally appeared in "Collected Poems" in 1993.

Posted by dwaber at 12:29 PM

October 03, 2007

GETTING IT DOWN

Sometimes I have to
run out of the shower quickly
to get a poem down
or write bits rudely
like a phone number
on a paper serviette
or beside an agenda

But all this is better
than a still-birth
or having a baby die inside
and carrying it to term
or looking surprised
at what popped into the can
of the bush-toilet
disturbing the flies

Iíve met a woman
who had both these things happen
She also said
she felt nothing
down there

Thatís how it can happen
I suppose

—Helen Pavlin
____
originally appeared in "Collected Poems" in 1993.

Posted by dwaber at 04:50 PM

October 02, 2007

IN THE TRADE

jars of acid and
exfoliating cream
tools of the poet

—Helen Pavlin
____
originally appeared in "Collected Poems" in 1993.

Posted by dwaber at 11:50 AM