Alison Clement

observations from a novelist who sometimes wants to say something small and see it published immediately

Tag Archive for ‘poetry’

the secretive mind

At Kim Stafford’s poetry workshop I accidentally wrote a poem that told a secret even though I wasn’t thinking of the secret and when it came time to share what we had written I read something else. Is this what poems do—make you say things you want to keep hidden? It is ok to keep some things hidden which just means private as long as you know what they are. […]

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Taha Muhammad Ali

Taha Muhammad Ali  (1931-2011): Palestinian poet, author of “So What; New and Selected Poems, 1971-2005” pub.2006, Copper Canyon Press  And so it has taken me all of 60 years to understand that water is the finest drink, and bread the most delicious food, and that art is worthless unless it plants a measure of splendor in people’s hearts. Thanks, Roger Weaver, for sending this.

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just for saying: Plum

The plums are ripe and summer is over. I am back at work. Chuck has made a studio for me, a room in the back yard near the garden, so I have a place to write. I would rather write about my life than live it. That is a terrible thing to admit. Oh, today is Tuesday already. What happened to Sunday, poetry day on my blog? I am trying […]

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Zavis Kalandra

In The Art of Fiction David Lodge talks about  the refusal of Paul Eluard, then one of the world’s most renowned Communist poets, to intervene on behalf of his friend, Zavis Kalandra, a surrealist who was executed by the new, revolutionary Czech government. Lodge tells about Milan Kundera describing a day in June of 1950 when the ‘streets of Prague were once again ‘crowded with young people dancing….’ The day […]

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It’s Sunday, poetry day. This is from Sara Backer. INMATES I heard there was a fat skunk, all white, who waddled in the yard followed by two kits the men called babies. I heard about a pair of chipmunks and raccoons that hung around the kitchen. A hummingbird appeared one morning, a gray-tailed hawk at noon, and at night, feeding on mosquitoes, bats carved dark curves in the darker sky. […]

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white devil

> Reading Amiri Baraka for my poetry class. A poem written after the murder of Malcolm X: Poem for Black Hearts. For all of him, and all of yourself, look up, black man, quit stuttering and shuffling, look up black man I read The Autobiography of Malcolm X when I was a high school student in Beardstown, Illinois. I was at the county fair a while later with my friend […]

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>Trying Not to Preach

April is Poetry Month so yesterday I read poems to the third graders: Robert Frost and William Carlos Williams. I read the Red Wheel Barrow poem and I read the beginning of Sharon Creech’s novel, Love That Dog, about a boy who is forced to read the wheel barrow poem. Sometimes I look at the kids, sitting on the floor around me, and I think of the world we are […]

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