Sunday, January 01, 2006

I Will Return All The Farm Equipment Soon

I learned today that the Babylonians were the ones who started New Year's resolutions. Their most common resolution: return all borrowed farm equipment.

I was thinking of some resolutions this morning, but then saw all of them on various "the most common resolutions" lists on the internet. So will have to be more inventive.

I read an interview with Jack Gilbert in the Paris Review yesterday; he said when he had a year when he was unsatisfied with his poetry writing, he would write one hundred poems in one hundred days. I want to know more about this: did he really do this, or just try to? Should this be a resolution? I am thinking about it ...

Here is a poem by Jack Gilbert:
Tear It Down

We find out the heart only by dismantling what
the heart knows. By redefining the morning,
we find a morning that comes just after darkness.
We can break through marriage into marriage.
By insisting on love we spoil it, get beyond
affection and wade mouth-deep into love.
We must unlearn the constellations to see the stars.
But going back toward childhood will not help.
The village is not better than Pittsburgh.
Only Pittsburgh is more than Pittsburgh.
Rome is better than Rome in the same way the sound
of raccoon tongues licking the inside walls
of the garbage tub is more than the stir
of them in the muck of the garbage. Love is not
enough. We die and are put into the earth forever.
We should insist while there is still time. We must
eat through the wildness of her sweet body already
in our bed to reach the body within that body.

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