Charles Reznikoff, “On Brooklyn Bridge I saw a man drop dead”
On Brooklyn Bridge I saw a man drop dead.
It meant no more than if he were a sparrow.
Above us rose Manhattan;
below, the river spread to meet sea and sky.
George Oppen, from Of Being Numerous, “A Language of New York”
A city of the corporations
Glassed in dreams
And the pure joy
Of the mineral fact
Tho it is impenetrable
As the world, if it is matter
Frank O’ Hara, “Having a Coke With You”
is even more fun than going to San Sebastian, Irún, Hendaye, Biarritz, Bayonne
or being sick to my stomach on the Travesera de Gracia in Barcelona
partly because in your orange shirt you look like a better happier St. Sebastian
partly because of my love for you, partly because of your love for yoghurt
partly because of the fluorescent orange tulips around the birches
partly because of the secrecy our smiles take on before people and statuary
it is hard to believe when I’m with you that there can be anything as still
as solemn as unpleasantly definitive as statuary when right in front of it
in the warm New York 4 o’clock light we are drifting back and forth
between each other like a tree breathing through its spectacles
and the portrait show seems to have no faces in it at all, just paint
you suddenly wonder why in the world anyone ever did them
at you and I would rather look at you than all the portraits in the world
except possibly for the Polish Rider occasionally and anyway it’s in the Frick
which thank heavens you haven’t gone to yet so we can go together the first time
and the fact that you move so beautifully more or less takes care of Futurism
just as at home I never think of the Nude Descending a Staircase or
at a rehearsal a single drawing of Leonardo or Michelangelo that used to wow me
and what good does all the research of the Impressionists do them
when they never got the right person to stand near the tree when the sun sank
or for that matter Marino Marini when he didn’t pick the rider as carefully
as the horse
it seems they were all cheated of some marvelous experience
which is not going to go wasted on me which is why I am telling you about it
Note: I need to write a 10 page paper tying these together somehow. I will probably leave out the Oppen tidbit as it is from a much larger collection. The paper is due Thursday and I definitely don’t have time to do the piece justice in context to the rest of “Of Being Numerous” although I have so, so, so much to say about it if I could analyze just this one little tidbit. Enjoy the poetry, it’s all very short and sweet. Wish me luck with this paper!
Sorry to be falling behind on Blogging Honesty – I have 2 papers due this week and another due the week after. Then I’ll be done with my semester, wow. I’m really excited for it to be Thursday night lol, when both of these papers will be done. It’s 2AM and I’ve been up since 7 and I am totally WIPED right now. And I don’t really have much work done on either paper yet (1 is an 8 page first draft to be peer edited, and 1 is a 10 page paper on poetry and politics in New York City)
Such fun! Peace out, imma at least start outlining my ideas for the poetry paper 🙂 I’ve already read the pieces for my other paper (Aristotle – gender, sex, desire in Metaphysics, Physics, On The Generation of Animals) and annotated the readings heavily as I went through them looking for the 3 particular themes I’m supposed to focus on. So now it’s just a matter of penning my thoughts and as its a rough draft, it’s second on my priority list. Final paper is actually due 2 weeks from now for that class.
Aiight, good night. I’ll go to bed before 3AM I promise. Need to be up at 7:30 to get ready to get to class on time since I’m at home in Long Island. I was missing the comfort & feeling a tad homesick. I guess I need to be out of NYC to write a paper on it. Ironic.