Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Having Sushi With You

Is even more fun than going to the zoo
Or feeding pandas bamboo
Partly because in the low light restaurant
Partly because of shiny leather booths, partly because of clinking glasses
Partly because of the ripping of wooden chopsticks
Partly because of the burning sensation in my stomach
It is hard to sit still while others are being served
As methodical as sushi is being prepared
In the kitchen in the back bustling with Asian men
Between flying plates and crackling oil

And the restlessness seems to rise with expectations, just inconvenient
You sit there twiddling your thumbs impatiently

I sit
Here and I try to recall what I ordered, wondering if I should have picked the       Honeymoon Roll
Except possibly I think I ordered the Mexican by mistake
Which will be a decision I will later regret
And the fact that I have ordered the wrong roll means I will return later to satisfy my craving
Just as I have the last few days
At a more convenient time
And what good does all this fretting create
When the sushi is nearly to be brought to us
Or for that matter consumed
As our hunger devours us

It seems that the wait has been worth it in the end
Which is not to say we ever thought it wouldn’t be

Monday, November 5, 2012

The Cuban Doctor

Wallace Stevens’ The Cuban Doctor is difficult to decipher, one moment I think I figured it out but find myself lost. The accompanying illustration by Mahendra Singh didn’t assist in making this poem clear to me. I enjoy the visual the poem portrays and the journey of the physical and mental state. This is the second poem we have reviewed in class that Wallace Stevens has the theme of dreams. It’s fascinating how this poem and the Disillusionment of 10 o’clock have two different perspectives on dreams. The Disillusionment of 10 o’clock describes the joy and adventure of a man dreaming. In the Cuban Doctor, the dangers of dreaming can bring upon death. The poem describes how these dangers can creep up on you when you least expect it and in your most vulnerable state.


My initial reaction to Robert Kelly poem the Jungle was disappointing. The poem has a completely different meaning compared to Henri Rousseau painting The Dream. This painting was the pinnacle of Henri Rousseau artistic career. The painting conveys a luscious garden a woman’s fantasizes while listening to the charmer, who is seamlessly weaved into the jungle. In contrast, the poem discusses an individuals self conflict. The speaker faces disappointment with his own self-development. “The green” he nurtures ends up destroying him. It doesn’t provide him support and leaves him uncertain of his past and present. The speaker describes his surrounding to be monotonous and unstable, reflecting his development. He had greater hopes for his journey, described in the last line “the core of it is to be more.” Even though the poem doesn’t relate to the accompany artwork, the poem still holds value to me.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Edward Hopper and the House by the Railroad

I enjoy the story quality of Edward Hopper and the House by the Railroad written by Edward Hirsch. The isolated house is given so much personality. Intensely stared at, not sure what to do with its awkward self, and most of all ashamed of itself. The man painting the house has chemistry with the house. The painter judges the house without mercy and the house begins to judge the man. The impact the house had on its surrounding environment is desolate. The house is so unbearable to be around, there are no clouds in the sky, no shrubs flourishing, and no people to bring life. The man then leaves, bringing along the impact of the house. He is forever marked by empty ashamed feeling and will bring it upon his future paintings. 

Disillusionment of Ten o'Clock

The complimenting video of Disillusionment of Ten o’Clock by Wallace Stevens provided an appropriate vibe. The message of this poem is conveyed in a respective manner, the ordinary people in white nightgown are described bleakly all the same while the drunken old sailor is portrayed in a colorful light. The choice of the color yellow on the sailor, even though its not mention in the poem, is successful in contrast to the boring people. The repetitive structure of lines four through six emphasizes the townspeople, the multitude of them and lack of difference. I love the message of the poem, the routine habits creates the mundane causing the lost of imagination. The last line “catches tigers in red weather” is so different its unsettling yet refreshing.

Archaic Torso of Apollo

Archaic Torso of Apollo by Rainer Maria Rllke is a poem of the viewer taking in a destroyed statue of the god Apollo. The speaker analyzes the statue in its beheaded form and imagines the life of the statue in its original state. He is absolutely absorbed in this statue and finds it pleasing to be lost in its beauty. The structure of the poem is appealing, beginning with the legendary head that is not there and working descriptively down the statue. The speaker brings life into the statue if the statue still had a head. The last line in the third verse, “would not glisten like a wild beast’s fur,” indicates the statue has lost its fierce life. The last verse reads to me that the god Apollo is beyond this earthly world as if he has “burst” from the statue. The last line is definitely a curveball, “you must change your life.” Is this a moment of realization for the speaker to become something more inspired from this statue?