BookThug has re-issued Karen Mac Cormack’s first book of poetry Nothing By Mouth. There one finds a segment of a sequence that stands alone as a statement.
|details)||sifting the desert|
|the grains ignite|
|in her eye||(he never|
|noticed)||green as oasis|
|palms burning||(in the first place|
I like how the tabular layout allows the reader to read down the columns and generate meaning that complements the line by line horizontal working through. Furthermore, the placement of the parentheses can lead to a story seized upon in media res [details)], elaborated with an enjambement [(he never / noticed)] and left in suspension [(in the first place]. And the poem segment gets typographically denser as the pace of parenthetical comment picks up [two in the last “couplet” versus one in line one for the first couplet and one in line two for the second couplet causing a sort of bunching]. And retroactively one has the sense that the “swirl” results from “burning”; one moves from effect to cause in a pleasurable narrative progression. And perhaps some of the friction came from his not noticing the grains in her eye or the palms burning — in either direction “he” doesn’t notice details that we as readers do but we are unable to burst through the parenthesis and address this him or caution her about the irritation of desert sand in the eye: all we carry away from the oasis is a vision of flame. (a conflagration
And so for day 1089