It’s January and I have blog-itis. Post election, post holiday blog-itis. I’m sure some of you have experienced this dreaded malaise, in which the fingers on the keyboard don’t know where to begin. My own particular life is very mundane, not dramatic, at least not on the outside. Should I write about what kind of salad I prepared last night, or how I cried after I took down the Christmas tree? Or how all I want to do these days is play Scrabble on my computer, read, and write driveling, whining rants in my journal, stuff I hope will one day be recycled and turned into a cardboard box?
I have been reading some great poetry lately. Next to my computer rests my first copy of 32 Poems, Volume 6, No. 2, published and edited by Deborah Ager, and I’ve got to say, it’s the best $14.00 I’ve spent on poetry in over a month. I’m not familiar with the names of all the poets included in this volume, but of course I recognized Billy Collins, whose tiny poem The Pencil is almost what I’d call a cameo, as it turns the very words of the poem into a metaphor in the quintessential style Collins is known for.
The name David Bottoms is also well-known to me, since he comes from my neck of the woods in Georgia. His poem, Walking the Floor Over You, has that Southern twang to it, with references to honky tonks, cotton mills, cowboys, and beer, a poem I can relate to, about a woman swinging her bony hips (although mine are curvy) who needs to hear the same song over and over. It’s a poem with empathy.
There is a wide variety of poems included in this round number of 32. There are sonnets, a villanelle, a prose poem, free verse, a poem about lymph nodes (gooey and very good), one about bats, diminutive, and another about pineapples.
The second and third poems, starring Thumbelina’s mother, captured my imagination the most. They are both modern sonnets, with slant rhyme, except at the final couplet. I love poems that mess with the rules. But even more, I love how the author, Bernadette Geyer, entered into a secret world and made it come alive for me. She went inside Thumbelina’s realm and painted the myth, as if on a miniature Flemish canvas in egg tempera, with all it’s dark, psychic power.
Yes, I think I’ll renew my subscription to 32 poems, in case anyone is wondering. What an exciting life. Feeling much better now.