All posts filed under: Spinnin’ Threads

Weaving and Web-making

‘A Glass of Tea, a View of the Atlas’ by Shadab Zeest Hashmi

Trade An assortment of crooked and straight arrows for the crest of a bulbul or a handful of sesame Uncut turquoise for juices of scorpions and glow worms A dozen poisons for an embroidered collar/ a pinch of saffron/ abalone knob Spotted eggs for knotted shoes Peacock feathers for beet sugar How much fur will buy cloves for my toothache? How many sprigs of mint/ radishes to restring your rabab? The market is spinning between us How much of us has been stolen by the ghosts of aromas? When night comes there is spinach again for the promise of quail Your dream of cake feeds on wild berries You kiss my cold shoulder I comb out the market from your hair A Glass of Tea, a View of the Atlas You give me Fez honey on Fennel cakes in a ceramic saucer because you say, to eat from this bitter clay (glazed and caressed with geometric precision), will draw me into the shapeless sob of the future. You read invasion’s epistle even in the smoothness …

“The Infinite Body of Sensation”: Visual poetry by Salma Caller

Sound is a shell Sound is a shell An ear Curves of sound Vibrating and condensing air Echoes in a curved space An ocean in the shell of sound Pearls Things that stand in for other things The Witches Pouches Bags of velvet black Nets entangling objects Bones of birds The insides of shells Spells Pearls Things that stand in for other things Nets entangling objects Bones of birds The insides of shells Black Lace Turn this talk into a tale A small dark textured cloth Shadows with shades of velvet Borders and edges tactile Spaces glittering and ornate An elaborate intertwining language Of touching A complex dance of bodies Claustrophobic close Obscure ornate organs Lying in a dark net of black stuffs Needles like obsidian beaks Braiding sound into A florid calligraphy of sensations Rose Point Point de Neige Gros Point Punto in aria Lying in a dark net of black stuffs Needles like obsidian beaks Braiding sound into A florid calligraphy of sensations Rose Rose coloured lips swirling around a dark spot Tasting …

‘the goldberg variations’ by Chris Murray

scene 1: the goldberg variations   a kiosk at the end of a dark train in an abandoned travelyard: two shadowmen ravel orange round about their nothing much the magician in his moth coat appears in a vaudeville flourish. your piano balcony is high above the narrow stone street, your piano plays the rescued Goldberg, plays, and plays through its charred pages, – their black edges. it is the gothic quarter men move in their coffins.  their coffins are white with crosses on (red)  their coffins are on narrow shelves of (stone) aside an archivum (shades of gray):     a shady tree     an etched stone     a skull and crossbones Scene 2 : the goldberg variations     that indestructible piano! the undestroyed Goldberg is playing (again) wending its tones above a skatepark of bullet-glass (the melody plays, yes). I see that:  the romans left their life-size eggs and urns below the city  stitches pull and sting on the underside of my elbow (pain) softening the blow here and here there is no stitching …

‘Popping Candy’ and other poems by Sarah O’Connor

Poemín   This poem Will be Exquisitely short   And   Dinkily dedicated To you.   Popularity, Personified   Smugness was her scarf, Inked pinkly, cerisely, She stroked it smugly. Smugness was her scarf.   Idleness was her chignon, Gleaming, burnished, shiny She fondled it idly. Idleness was her chignon.   Cuteness was her weapon, Trigger fingered, ready, She cocked it cutely. Cuteness was her weapon.   Blandness was her boyfriend, Broad-shouldered, dreamy, She loved blandly. Blandness was her boyfriend.   For Heaney   The sorrow’s mine and yours. It’s all of ours. We shake our heads. Now, when we want words, We will rifle and riffle Through pages printed. We will thumb-skim his volumes. We will become accustomed, And forget to mourn, as we do today, For his bits of the world welded to Bits of the meaning of the world. With those new silvered weldings, Hand-soldered together by him, Scudding from him to us. We will miss his missiles of insight.   Tír na nÓg   I saw Tír na nÓg For the …

The Myth and Memory Of Eavan Boland’s Latest Poems by J P O’Malley

I do not often recommend newspaper articles on Irish poetry, but I am making an exception in the case of The Examiner’s review of Eavan Boland’s latest book New and Selected Poems Eavan Boland (Carcanet). J P O’Malley offers an extensive review, some illuminating video links, and a preview of his upcoming interview with Boland at The Boogaloo (London) in this article. ‘The heroic narrative that the founding fathers of the State attempted to make a universal truth is also something that Boland’s poetry has challenged consistently. Lest we forget, the birth of the Irish nationalist myth was forged initially through poetry, which unapologetically glorified violence ‘ (Examiner) It was a similar situation in the visual arts where censorship was prevalent and the original blasphemy laws (we updated them again in 2010) were used to suppress arts, most notoriously the work of Charles Rouault. We can examine how publications were seized and often censored for crimes like obscenity. The fact that there existed before Boland an entire suppressed narrative, a body of literature by women poets, should not surprise us, although it continues to …