Brocade

Photography by Armelle Touzeau


Broken brocade;

Where do I put this sequin when the sequence

Falls like notes from the cellar door?

On my knees searching on the dirty waxed floor

Hands graze gypsy mambo scuff-marks

And dirty martini olive-swords.

Candles glow in distant red bulbs,

My search waxes dim.

How does poetry save the world like God? Read More

Parousia: Narrator’s Reproach

Painting by Vladimir Kush

I told you I’d come again, so don’t act surprised.  I save you to save me, so if you think this a selfless deed, you are outrageously mistaken.  There are no surroundings here, so it’s about time you snap out of your aloof body and get with it.  Always wanting more, if I say a leaf brushed his face, your ego goes searching for Read More

Top Annie Proulx Similes and Metaphors 

Photo by Quentin Jones

 

One of the greatest contemporary authors of American literature once described a character’s storytelling as being able to “make you smell the smoke from an unlit fire.”  After having reread Annie Proulx’s oeuvre, I attribute this compliment to the Pulitzer Prize winning fiction writer herself.  Here is a list of Proulx’s top similes and metaphors, compiled from four volumes of short stories and five novels (in chronological order.  If I’ve missed some of your favorites, I’d love to hear from you.) Enjoy!

From Heart Songs and Other Stories (1988)

1. “Stong’s eyes shone like those of a greedy barn cat who has learned to fry mice in butter.” from ‘On the Antler’

2. “Earl was paying Santee three hundred dollars a week and he hadn’t shot a single bird.  ‘How’s about this?’ said Santee, feeling more and more like a cheating old whore every time they went [hunting].” from ‘The Unclouded Day’

3. “Santee had not heard shooting birds was that hard, but he knew Earl was no good; he had the reflexes of a snowman.” from ‘The Unclouded Day’

Painting by Cheri Wollenberg

4. “‘She’s Archie Noury’s wife.  Rose Noury.  Left Archie, come to live with Warren.  For how long, who knows?  What I call leaving the frying pan for the fire.’” from ‘A Country Killing’ Read More

Uncarving Lines

spilled-food-art-giulia-bernardelli-36

Art by Giulia Bernardelli

Reading Crime and Punishment in the dark and wet rural Chinese winter and Joshua got sick with a fever on the border town.  Wanting to kill the nihilist prick, “Rodya,” I explored the streets alone and brought back a paper bowl of noodles.  The inherent problem with writing is that it delineates thought and action.  Can we write and free ourselves from further categorization, further erring by playing tricks that depend on the duality illusion? Read More

Currency

Prayer Piedra

Praying in Tayrona, Colombia

To sacrifice smarts for wisdom

Simplicity the gift, the dream of the ages

All these lines evolve into something greater than themselves

Greatness intrinsic to the word-seeds

If you could love a perfect prophet then you know love Read More