Tuesday, November 29, 2005

end of semester reading

how do i get myself roped into these things? so i have to read at the end of the semester MFA reading on monday, and i can't read any of the old stuff i read last year. i want to read few things from prague, but they haven't been revised, most of them haven't even been workshopped. any feedback on this one? the middle stanza might not really fit... but i like it too much to cut it, and the poem would be missing something without it. and this was an assignment, so i was required to use my full name. but i don't like the sound of "budris" at the end. but i like the line, so there has to be something there... i don't know. thoughts?

Remembering Prague

If I die in Prague no one
will remember my name. Letters
will slip between cracked
cobblestones—a consonant here, a
vowel there. No street will take
my name, no statue, monument.
No one will rest small stones
upon my grave or set up
stands to sell memorabilia.

Last night, young Czechs
rolled joints on the beergarden
tables. Bits of grass caught
the wind, went hang-gliding. Rolled
down the hill. Took wrong
turns. Got lost beneath city
spires, fingers slim and squirming
pointing to heaven. Came
to rest among streetlamps and stone.

Today, when I die in Prague,
Charles Bridge will still be heaving,
cement seams bursting with tourists.
They will congregate to watch death
ring his golden bell, Astronomical
Clock chiming. They will not
notice my absence, but the river
Vltava will whisper Katie,
the rain will echo Budris.

2 Comments:

Blogger ziegenhagen said...

I like it a lot KTB. It's personal, but grand. Soft, but poignant. Certainly effective.

I think the first stanza is the weakest. It doesn't grab me the way the next two do.

And as far as the name at the end, I would change it away from your name completely. Make it more universal. Say something like

but the river
Vltava will whisper my name,
the rain will echo poetry.

or replace poetry with footsteps, or some other tangible but unforseen sound.

I really do like it though. I can see Prague. It looks beautiful, I want to go.

10:12 PM | Permalink  
Blogger ziegenhagen said...

I meant it to say

the rain will echo my poetry.

10:16 PM | Permalink  

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