Sunday, September 25, 2011

Alliteration in Red

Tomorrow night, 9/26/11 from 7 - 7:30 Eastern Standard Time, I have the honor of interviewing two lovely, brilliant, red-headed poets for Tiferet Talk.

Poets Adele Kenny and Deborah LaVeglia are both reading series directors. Kenny runs the Carriage House Poetry Reading Series, and LaVeglia directs Poets Wednesday. Both Kenny and LaVeglia also work for Tiferet, Kenny as a poetry editor and LaVeglia as a reading coordinator. Kenny is the award winning author of more than a dozen books of poetry and non-fiction. Her most recent collection of poems, What Matters, was released just this month and is already enjoying a warm critical reception. LaVeglia is a workshop facilitator for events such as Teen Arts Festival and the author of the collection Vigil.
We’ll be talking about how to give a great poetry reading, how poems are selected for publication in Tiferet, what makes a good spiritual poem, and many other things. If you can’t join us live, please feel free to listen to the archives anytime after the airing. They’ll be available indefinitely at the itunes and Blogtalk sites.

“Of Feathers, Of Flight” by Adele Kenny
From What Matters
Winner of the 2007 Merton Poetry of the Sacred Award
if I look up into the heavens I think that it will all come right …
and that peace and tranquility will return again.
                                 – Anne Frank

That spring, a baby jay fell from its nest,
and we took it to Mrs. Levine, who told
us the mother would know our hands and
never take it back. Spring that year was a
cardboard box, cries for eyedropper food –
feather-stalks stretched into wings. We
knew, of course, that we couldn’t keep it.
(Later, we would mark the spot with stones
and twigs – where the bird fell, where we
let it go – and sometimes, stopped in the
middle of play, would point and say, there,
right there.)
The day we freed it, it beat, a
heart-clock (wound and sprung in Ruth
Levine’s old hand) that, finally, finding
the sky, flew higher than all the briars
strung like metal barbs above the backyard
fence – a speck of updraft ash and gone.
Heaven, fuller then for one small bird,
spread its blue wing over us and the tree
and Mrs. Levine who, breathing deeply,
raised her numbered arm to the light and
moved her thumb over each fingertip as if
she could feel to the ends of her skin the
miracle edge of freedom, of feathers, of flight.

"Of Sleep & Dreams" by Deborah LaVeglia
Originally published Edison Literary Review

The sun wakes me.
Its light coaxes me out of my dream,
forces me to crawl back inside my skin.
What is real
and what is unreal
divide themselves,
as blissful sleep puts on its coat and hat.
I reclaim my body one section at a time.
Mouth: dry.
Muscles: stiff.
What I want is to find a way
back into that dream,
where there are only the two of us
in black and white,
and we share a cigarette, an inside joke
and some whiskey.
And , like a Frank Capra movie,
everything turns out right in the end.
All our friends line up to support us, and
nothing is allowed to prick our skin unexpectedly.