Wednesday, April 25, 2012

The Unmappable End

For this ripening, you are
Tossed up like flotsam from a former passion
As, dazed, you enter to escape

Destruction riding over the seven hills.
In cartography, maps are devices for forgetting
Each syllable uttered clear: your name

A hazy conception of rhythms and patterns
Around the perimeters
In circles and figure eights, and kept the world moving

In the quick outline of a gesture, of a lover's,
Traced in the shadow
The same sequence as the night before:

Spirals turned by an incessant wind.
Whatever expires in this here vice of season, fire
Ends and lays out a map

On the edge of nothing, like a prayer
To keep our metaphysics warm
And unmake the day. Your heart

Covers the world's murderous noise;
Ruins your life.
Everything appears in a different light, absolutely everything

And your lives from your unfinished reach
Makes for haphazard punctuation. Later works
Turn where the stairs bend

Appear, by contrast pale, though some, vivid as the sky above them
Act as if from tomorrow on
Time would soon part with the air

Where earth and air unnerve, divide
Yet yielding toehold to buds
Between gnarled roots and rotting boards

Before the deluge, before the parting.
You take a piece of wood in your hand and say:
"The end is blast of ancient rage."

And maybe it is. It has always been this way
It is part of the constellation:
Quadrants without inhabitants, the coordinates pair

Spiralling to an unmapped end.

Arranged by Christine Fojas
---
Prompt: cento: poem composed of other poets' lines.

Poets in order of appearance:
Marjorie Evasco, Elizabeth Jennings, Charles Tomlinson, John Heath-Stubbs, Marie Bismonte, Merlie Alunan, Henning Kramer Dahl, Fatima Lim, Oystein Wingaard Wolf, Luis Cabalquinto, Wallace Stevens, Bink Noll, Liana Langa, Edel Garcellano, George Hitchcock, Knute Skinner, T.S. Eliot, Rosa Alice Branco, Andre Velter, Valerie Rouzeau, Helena Sinervo, Gwendolyn Brooks, Ariel Gordon, Brian Jones, Hugh MacDiarmid, Daniel Banulescu, Gabrielle Althen, Maria Luisa Aguilar-Carino, Abbie Huston Evans, Robyn Sarah, Mariano Kilates, Peter Waterhouse, Edgardo Maranan, EJ Galang, Michael McLure, Helwig Brunner, Jon Stallworthy

Bibliography: 
NORTH AMERICAN
A Geography of Poets
CV2: The Keystone of Canadian Poetry Turns 35

EUROPEAN
British Poetry since 1945
New European Poets
Norton Anthology of Poetry: 3rd Edition
Selected Poems by Tomas Transtromer

FILIPINO
A Habit of Shores
Crowns and Oranges
Don Carlos Palanca Awards: 1980s Poetry

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