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Archive for April, 2008

it is at moments after i have dreamed

it is at moments after i have dreamed
of the rare entertainment of your eyes,
when (being fool to fancy) i have deemed

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Mary Cassatt (1844-1926), Breakfast in Bed

Mary Cassatt (1844-1926), Breakfast in Bed

Someone asked me recently if perfect exists. I thought about something Edgar Degas said about friend Mary Cassatt’s painting, “It is beautiful with that hint of ugliness without which nothing works.”

In my definition of perfection, there is ugliness.

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Three Perfect Poems

The Healer

In a rundown tenement
Under the superhighway,
A healer lives
Who doesn’t believe in his power.

An old man with a fat gut,
Hands of a little girl
Which he warms
Over a pan of boiling water.

In his hallway there are
Many wheelchairs, on the stairs
the long howl of the idiot
Led on a leash.

(Charles Simic, born 1938 )

They say the difference between an amateur and a professional is economy of effort. That’s also true in poetry. In a perfect poem, the subject matter is intriguing, the form fits the subject matter, the poem is written from the poet’s heart and the writing seems effortless.

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True Love

True love. Is it normal
is it serious, is it practical?
What does the world get from two people
who exist in a world of their own?

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Sunset

My great happiness
is the sound your voice makes
calling to me even in despair; my sorrow
that I cannot answer you
in speech you accept as mine.

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