rejectomorph (flying_blind) wrote,

A Bit of Literary Cubism

It has been a while since I posted any poetry, and gave everybody a break from my writing. True, when I post something as good as what follows. it makes my stuff look bad by comparison, but every now and then I feel the need to publicize something I like. This is a piece by Pierre Reverdy, (in a translation by Kenneth Rexroth,) and everyone should read him! I mean this! If you do not all begin reading him now I shall become very cross and post hundreds of rants about Sluggo!

But, seriously, Reverdy is one of the most remarkable poets of the twentieth century. His work occupies the same realm of sensibility as the paintings of the early part of the century and, for those open to the experience, provide the same sort of glimpse into a self-contained world which reflects and reveals our everyday reality without that layer of intellectual dust which accumulates over a lifetime. Which I suppose is just a fancy way of saying that he blows the cobwebs from the commonplace and reveals treasures underneath. I would write like him, if I could. He has undoubtedly influenced my (much lesser) prose style, and my way of looking at the world. For this I am grateful.

I am posting a particular poem, one line of which just popped into my head this evening. (That happens frequently.) Take a deep breath, and enjoy.



Some time ago
Clear night
New sunrise
Next day
An old man on his knees holds out his hands
Animals ran all along the road

I sit me down
I have dreamed
A window opens on my head
Nobody home
A man goes by behind the hedge

The countryside where a single bird sings
Somebody is afraid
Somebody is amused
Down there between two little children
You against me
Rain washes away tears

You can't walk the narrow path
You go back the same way
There is a gate
Something just fell
Down behind there

His shadow bigger than himself
goes around the earth
And me I just sit there and don't dare look

Pierre Reverdy


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