Tuesday, August 10, 2010

P-mail (Poetry Mail)

Poem of the Day:
Marianne Burton's "Thanks for your email"
Poetry Wales, Summer 2010

I am in the preliminary stages of thought regarding life after college (chokes, then screams). I have been actively pursuing various fellowship applications and teaching abroad programs, sending daily inquiry e-mails like a carnivorous hound, nipping excitedly at the thought of avoiding The Real World for another year or two.

This daily correspondence plus a job and an internship has left me with little time to write down any poetic scraps of my own. This neglect makes me anxious.

Then I read Burton's poem. Aha! I have been writing poetry all along. P-mail, if you will.

Thanks for your email
(after Wang Wei)

You drove through Hallaton?
Do I want the news? You bet.

Outside our back bathroom,
is the greengage flowering yet?

The rhyme is subtle, the rhythm even more so. The e-mail (p-mail) is short, brief, but tells of an intimacy ("our back bathroom") that need not ask a lot of questions. There is a silence full of knowing in this short piece, a silence made stronger but not more impersonal by the mode of correspondence.

Perhaps all my e-mails are p-mails. I certainly pay close attention to diction and syntax, trying to come across as both eager but well-informed. But poetry? Yeah, I'll buy it.

A Poem A Day Audrey


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home