Today as I glance out at January’s first whiteout, obliterating the world from my window, I happily nestle back under blankets to recharge with Nick Flynn’s first book, Some Ether. First books read as coming of age novels in that they make a stake in outlining a poet’s primary obsessions and concerns. In Some Ether the poems ache for interconnectedness and express fear of drowning in that need. Full of uncertainties, Flynn longs to find beauty in what is often an ugly and terrible world.
Lis Weiss Horowitz: The Bicyclist
Ondar Goekce 1952-1995
We buried you on the hottest day
while your children, impatient with grief
and the long ride in the limousine,
jumped through the fluid hoop
the sprinkler cast in the neighbor’s grass,
the sun directly above. The sermon
on how briefly we love meant nothing
when the priest in his Turkish folds
opened the top of your pine box
and rolled you onto your side,
turning your weight to face Mecca.
My envoy, who slipped off your bicycle
on a clear day without traffic, as you were turning
to your wife to say something, could anything
have broken your fall? Did you know
you were pedaling away from us forever?
She said the bike sailed out from under you
as if it had a mind of its own.
You who go before us, at the turn
of the block, a turn we all have taken,
where houses begin again after the marsh
where will you be this winter while we skate
on the strange calm of the time we have?
republished from MassPoetry Poem of the Moment