Recognize that the very molecules that make up your body, the atoms that construct the molecules, are traceable to the crucibles that were once the centers of high mass stars that exploded their chemically rich guts into the galaxy, enriching pristine gas clouds with the chemistry of life. So that we are all connected to each other biologically, to the earth chemically and to the rest of the universe atomically. That’s kinda cool! That makes me smile and I actually feel quite large at the end of that. It’s not that we are better than the universe, we are part of the universe. We are in the universe and the universe is in us.
– Interview with Neil deGrasse Tyson, “Beyond the Big Bang”, The Universe, The History Channel, 2007
This collection of essays edited by Kurt Brown offers an interesting collection of writers, from those dealing in both poetry and science (Miroslav Holub), to poets intrigued by what science both unveils to and hides from us as people (just about everyone else). I have found a lot of interesting quotes in most of these essays (read here), and a lot that doesn’t quite fit inside the quotation format. Some ephemeral knowledge building that won’t quite fit into language right now.
In Kim Addonizio‘s Ordinary Genius, she writes about the “pain body,” a concept borrowed from a book called The Power of Now, which I’ve never read. But the exercises discussed in this chapter (18, pp.148-155) look interesting enough to give it a go. And here is where I record that experiment. I invite you to follow along and conduct your own…
I’m going to do this live, so check back on the post and I will be sure to note when it’s ended.
I’ve been reading a lot of great books lately… Some, I’ve read through and am going back to spend more time with, and some are new for me. As I work through them, I’m posting a lot of quotes up here on the blog, and not really offering a whole lot of analysis to go along. I’m trying to get volume taken care of, I suppose.
One day when the planet was idly
pressing stegosaurs in her scrapbook
she threw out a whole plateau
you get distracted, you put down that scribbled
fossilized note about Martian microbes
and once you set a tectonic plate on top of it,
you may never find it again…
– “Mount Clutter”, (1-4, 8-11)
She drifted along his side and touched his face,
then felt the wind lift her arms,
wind under her hair, in her mouth.
“Dear love,” said her mouths
that were also her hands and hair
shaken out by the wind.
She bowed, he bowed,
they began forming rings for each other.
Poetry is not just about language, though language is its medium. Poetry’s true subject is the spirit, the divine, the sacred, the ineffable. If you prefer God, use that word. It’s just a word, though one that’s loaded with baggage. And it makes poetry sound loftier than it is, since by God and the sacred I mean everything, the “what is” of life. [and from the previous paragraph] If you believe there is nothing beyond the body, you probably still have a sense of what I’m talking about. (100)
All poems are seductions. When you fall under the spell of a poem, it’s an infatuation that can become a love affair. A poem wants you to feel like this; it doesn’t feel complete unless it makes a personal connection. (115)