'Ff'lo (fflo) wrote,

that old chestnut, and the poem I keep meaning to mention

Had an e-mail from M*** C. H*** this a.m. She reports having seen the H-bomb this past summer, how the bomb has grown, and how she wishes the bomb and I could be friends. And that she loves us both a lot.

I ponder what I might say writing back.

I could tell her that I wish that very much, too, she has no idea. I could tell her how the ways that seems to be impossible are all tied up with the post-split gaslighting I have had to work so hard to get through. I could say it seems probable, given what I've heard, that it would be impossible for the H-bomb to accomodate, to integrate into her current reality, any contact with me. And of course there's the whole other angle I might mention of how re-established contact could be dangerous for me, if the bomb's not grown in ways that include de-fusing, and (moreover) that even to want it still the way I do is arguably not a good thing, or a healthy desire, or an indication of a full measure of self-worth.

More fundamentally, to tell MCH anything, with the kind of context it would need to have meaning, would be to tell her so much I feel I can't tell her, not wanting to either badmouth her friend to her, or report how I hear her friend has badmouthed her (and worse, as word has it).

But, you know me (perhaps) (depending which you you are): my mind keeps touching that "she has grown" thing, like a hole in fabric ("you'll just make it bigger"), and I wonder, and I wish. This even though just weeks ago I saw her, bizarro-surreal "right there" close, for a good long moment, and knew somehow by instinct not to make contact, in those circumstances--- despite so much of my being, in other moments, aching to do that very thing. Same part of my being that was shaken by it, and wondered later whether I'd missed a rare opportunity. Call it the part of me that still hasn't jettisoned that hammered aluminum, just in case.

The poem I keep meaning to mention is one schroederjt pointed out to me in a comment here to a post referring back to this post about my unfinished(?) valediction:

Marilyn Hacker's "Nearly A Valediction"

Quite a bit of verse, huh? I'm tickled that Marilyn also engaged/grappled with the valediction in a complicated way. Years ago, on a whim, I bought a book of hers I stumbled on in the women's bookstore. It had yugg-o cover art (which's been improved since), and a lousy-"big" title, too---Love, Death, and the Changing of the Seasons---but I fell hook, line & sinker for its cycle of poems tracing the whole life of a romantic relationship. They're almost all sonnets. They play with the form, and, here's the thing, include crazily colloquial language, yet with such (a formalist's) care for each syllable. I sped right through that hefty little volume and still love it when I pick it up.

I guess I say that to say I'm not surprised I liked Marilyn's near-valediction.

As for my own, the only thoughts I've had about the poem since bringing it up here are that I could take the comma out of the title (ooooh) and that it could take the framework (I am drawn to anyway) of being about its being written. And then the strain of difficulty, stops-and-starts, etc., in the writing of it, and thus in it, stand for the difficulty, etc., in the process of farewell it references. The method-cum-theme of "so sensitive you touch it only two steps removed." And valediction is speech that acts. So there's that.

I suppose it could even ask the reader whether there should be a comma in the title.

The comma in the title indicates that the valediction is now being made; no comma and the poem says it's about one not made yet, and not made herein either.

Oh, who knows. Maybe it starts with the encounter:

Valediction Overdue

Finally, it's just a town, I sighed to think I'd come to
feel, wistful but safer, when you'd left. Then I walked through a door
to your face two feet from mine. Which I scrunched. Six ways, then
six more, squinting above its slacked jaw, as if facial muscles
could help me know whether I'm dreaming. Truth is, you'll never
be gone, and I know it. Mutherfuck mutherfuck mutherfuck mutherfuck....

Hmmm. Perhaps it's taking a wrong turn in that last line.  :]

Geez those are some long-ass lines, for this poet.

Wonder if it's the Terri influence.

I've made up probably 5 or 6 songs about the H-bomb since it went off, but haven't finished one poem.
Tags: poetry

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