Tuesday, January 03, 2012

`A Little More, Please'

Waiting for me on my return to Houston:

Cool, dry weather with a promise of frost.
A Hank Williams medley on the radio.
A semi-flat rear tire on the car, laptop and email troubles, sub specie aeternitatis.
The first Spanish I’ve heard in two and a half weeks, spoken at the deli counter in Kroger’s: “Un poco más, por favor.”
Three books in the mail, including a collection of poems for review shipped from England.
A red sunset. Any sun at all, in fact, after seventeen days in the state of Washington, where I did, however, see a double rainbow last week, albeit briefly.
A Christmas card from Helen Pinkerton with a photograph by André Kertész, “Washington Square, Winter” (1954), on the front.
The January issue of First Things, containing a review by Paul Kane of Les Murray’s new collection, Taller When Prone, and a new poem by him, “The Death of Isaac Nathan, 1864,” which starts like this: 

“‘Stone statues of ancient waves
tongue like dingoes on shore
in time with wave-glitter on the harbor
but the shake-a-leg chants of the Eora 

“are rarely heard there any  more
and the white man who drew their nasals
as footprints on five-lined paper
lies flat away up Pitt Street, 

“lies askew on gravel Pitt Street.”

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