Monday, November 19, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving from Matthea Harvey

Here are some cool poems by Matthea Harvey to get you ready for Thanksgiving. Her newest book, Modern Life, is out now from Graywolf Press.

Implications for Modern Life
By Matthea Harvey

The ham flowers have veins and are rimmed in rind, each petal a little
meat sunset. I deny all connection with the ham flowers, the
barge floating by loaded with lard, the white flagstones like platelets
in the blood-red road. I’ll put the calves in coats so the ravens can’t
gore them, bandage up the cut gate &; when the wind rustles its
muscles, I’ll gather the seeds and burn them. But then I see a horse
lying on the side of the road and think You are sleeping,You are sleeping,
I will make you be sleeping. But if I didn’t make the ham flowers, how can
I make him get up? I made the ham flowers. Get up, dear animal.
Here is your pasture flecked with pink, your oily river, your bleeding
barn. Decide what to look at and how. If you lower your lashes,
the blood looks like mud. If you stay, I will find you fresh hay.

(From Tin House, Issue 24, Summer 2005)

Setting the Table

To cut through night you'll need your sharpest scissors. Cut around the birch, the
bump of the bird nest on its lowest limb. Then with your nail scissors, trim around 
the baby beaks waiting for worms fall from the sky. Snip around the lip of the 
mailbox and the pervert's shoe peeking out from behind the Chevy. Before dawn, 
rip the silhouette from the sky and drag it inside. Frame the long black stripe and 
hang it in the dining room. Sleep. When you wake, redo the scene as day in doily. 
Now you have a lacy fence, a huge cherry blossom of a holly bush, a birch 
sugared with snow. Frame the white version and hang it opposite the black. Get 
your dinner and eat it between the two scenes. Your food will taste just right.

(From Cue, Winter 2005, Volume II, Issue I)

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