Have you heard of the scurfpea, quagga, aye-aye, or the northern gastric frog? Greg Delanty’s new book of poems, No More Time, is filled with such exotic creatures, and more familiar ones, too. In some cases, they are thriving. Many others are either extinct or endangered, facts weighted with an awareness of humans’ role in their plight.
I hit “Buy It Now” over and over on Amazon. Big blue tubs of lightly salted cashews hit the front porch softly, pouched in plastic.
I’m the strut of starlight / in the open tabernacle— / I’m the songs of leopard frogs / in the dew-spackled grass.
That absence filled with water, and we swam: / kept to the surface, above rusted beams / and weeds and car or body parts, above / sequins of glass, or rutted signs, or cans / crushed to bright coins, or hypodermics.
I remember when you found your mother, said your uncle. / You close your eyes, / smell chlorine. See the backyard’s cedars, / bougainvillea shadow her swollen body.
The enormous collage, Jheri Now, Curl Later, by L.A. artist Mark Bradford has been a part of the Brooklyn Museum’s permanent collection for over fifteen years. My love affair and subsequent fixation with Bradford’s work began in the year 2004, during an early iteration of the museum’s First Saturday program
Waking from a troubled sleep, I turned / and asked my wife what time it was. / Who are you? she asked. Your husband, / I said. I eat grapefruit, repair the washer. / You’re not my husband, she said. Yes, / I am, I said. If you’re my husband, / then who prepares the coffee? I do, I said, / every morning. And the glass bottles:
And there you were, elegant and engaging, though not / with the people around you, more with the air of the room, / an intimacy between you that I sensed as I watched
She leaps up / Ready to answer / Ready to answer / In her session / We see many
The sonnet is inexhaustible. Magnetic, mesmerizing, bewitching, nearly every poet is drawn to the form at some point in their career, whether they long to write the perfect sonnet, the Shakespearean, Petrarchan or Spenserian, or they desire to break the form, queer it, manipulate it, celebrate its mutability; they want to discover what magic can happen within those fourteen lines.