My New Favorite poet is C.D. Wright, who passed away yesterday, in the morning. I knew of her, but had not read too much of her work. After reading about her death, I then delved into reading about her, and, in turn, her amazing verse.
Sadly, the death of an artist often lends them greater exposure, which brings a whole new audience to the flame of their genius. This also means that that flame is extinguished (at least here on Earth), and we are unfortunately left with only the body of work they left as their legacy. Optimistically, though, at least we have THAT.
Here is a poem that struck me; for its ingenuity, its postmodern quality, its rhythm (that is what we’re about here at ARRTI, after all!), and the amazing way, when you have read it, even just once (although I recommend multiple times), you GET IT.
the breath the trees the bridge
the road the rain the sheen
the breath the line the skin
the vineyard the fences the leg
the water the breath the shift
the hair the wheels the shoulder
the breath the lane the streak
the lining the hour the reasons
the name the distance the breath
the scent the dogs the blear
the lungs the breath the glove
the signal the turn the need
the steps the lights the door
the mouth the tongue the eyes
the burn the burned the burning
C.D. Wright, “Flame” from Steal Away: Selected and New Poems (Copper Canyon Press, 2002).
By the way, if you want to hear Ms. Wright read the above poem in her own voice, go here and click the audio player at the top underneath the title. You can also see the poem in its original format in case Your Device / Browser + My Reprint = Format Hell (although I made very attempt to prevent this).
Click here to read an article in The New Yorker about one author’s personal experiences with her and how she was regarded by the literary world as whole.
You can read her Bio and other works at The Poetry Foundation here.
Also, here is her Wikipedia Entry.