Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Poetry In Motion

Only yesterday a friend was telling me how a child's hand eye co-ordination improved if she used Playstations, Gameboys and the like and how J was going to lag behind her peers for being a stranger to what the rest of her generation was growing up with.

He had made a strong case for why I was the "Monster Mom" and would one day pay for my atrocities against an innocent child.

I thought about it briefly and decided that I'd much rather she try archery when old enough and learn to appreciate poetry in the interim. I am not sold on the questionable benefits arising from zombification of little kids.

I guess I spoke to soon. Even poetry can go through a paradigm shift by when J comes of age
thanks to technology.

"But what if some poems aren't meant to be read at all? What if they are meant to be viewed? What if, like TV, they are meant to be surfed?

I ask in my indoor voice what it means to extract your own teeth

during sleep.


He thinks about the three minutes he stopped breathing in saltwater.

Closing his lids at fish. Wondering why his shirt felt like skin.


I try to explain why gravity always wins. How lightning is

rhetorical. The way "weight takes over a wing" comes to my lips

when I pass a downed powerline.


He speaks softly with empty sleeves. Says a bird losing altitude is a
new kind of rain. Roughly equivalent to the fluid in my ears.


"While the somnambulist explains the proper way to carve the eyes from a pigeon"

This poem is representative of Eric Baus' The To Sound in its ability to frustrate the act of reading. (Even the title of the book has this quality. How does one read "The To Sound"?) Like flipping through channels, the lines briefly intrigue, even send one on a reverie-abbreviated and changed by the next thumb-press. Who needs a story line? In fact, who needs any sense of connectedness at all?"

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