A Line from Barbara Guest’s Roses
That air in life is important but may be less so in the arts interests me. But we are 60% water and worth $28.49 in bone, fat and chemicals so should we focus more on water and $’s and less on air. But you may respond the atmosphere that encases us is all air but this is not completely true since there is pollution and those little filaments we see when light shafts float into a room and illuminate the air. Then we see what we think is truly there. Of course this ignores the question of the further reaches of space where air may be solid and water may be a gas. Then we would have to understand plants differently since plants would have to adjust and worms and beetles too. Maybe there is some type of traveling incognito and mysterious communication that happens in the air, a space that, for all we know, is a proscenium arch theater? And are our plants mutations or an advanced evolutionary form or just poor cousins? So perhaps we should start by admitting that we know very little even about what goes on in our own heads let alone the heads of our neighbors, of course speaking both literally and metaphorically? It is why one develops an attitude toward roses picked in the morning air, even roses without sun shining on them. I had hoped that looking at parts of her poem might help me understand her intentions. That did not work. Then I took from her poem the line above and used it to start writing this poem after a period when I felt I was neither water nor air. Only emptiness. Now I reread her poem and it is perhaps slowly opening a little to me like young roses that, frozen in time and space in a painting, offer themselves but will never deliver all their rosiness leaving to us to imagine the still hidden or perhaps sadly not.
— by George Spencer
George Spencer’s Obscene Richness of Our Times is due out in 2009 (Poets Wear Prada). He is translating poems from the Ecuadorian slam series he started, to be published as Slamming in Quito. Recent poems appeared in CLWN WR, Poetry MidWest, Caveat Lector, Stained Sheets, NewVerseNews, Phoenix and 63 Channels.
Copyright ©2009, by George Spencer. All Rights Reserved.