By Sandra M. Gilbert
Sandra Gilbert's poems are fantastically located on the intersection of craft and feeling.—Billy CollinsThe identify of this collection—at instances mournful, sardonic, and joyous—refers to the grief within the wake of loss. but those poems aren't on the subject of the results of loss but additionally in regards to the complicated stories of patience, acquiescence, and rebirth that, with good fortune, mark the aftermath of sorrow. from "Aftermath: Kite" But the idea is just paper in the end, a soul that adheres to a stick, tears open, shreds as if it really is flung to the floor in a last glossy fall, and ultimately the road is going limp, the mountaineering ends. Beyond the frenzy & sweep, an arc of silence— though a brain imagined this flight, & proved it as soon as.
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There was white satin, as usual, & the usual rice. We had three children, four grandchildren -a little girl you never met is at this moment crying in the next room, & the sun is climbing over the cypresses. As is customary, more than two thirds of the party are now dead, including of course you, and who will wave and smile in the backseat of the car, 47 who will roll down the window and let in the cold air? -DECEMBER I, 2007 MoviNG OuT Darling, I'm pushing the house into the garden, into the black arms, the green embrace of the oaks.
DECEMBER 1, 1957 I was twenty. You were twenty-seven. ) Our parents were fifty somethings & the grandparents in their seventies. Everybody wore hats. We ate Cornish game hens stuffed with wild rice. A string quartet played the waltzes from Rosen/cavalier. Cousins & fathers& brothers uttered toasts. When we cut the cake, Monsieur Charles, the maitre-d', surprised you with a cupcake on which a single candle rode. ) There was white satin, as usual, & the usual rice. We had three children, four grandchildren -a little girl you never met is at this moment crying in the next room, & the sun is climbing over the cypresses.
Was it hers who sobbed and put her head in the oven, was it theirs who made this day their wedding day, or his who couldn't keep from getting born? The tumult of birth pummeled and plunged him out, nothing could stop the clenched fist of the womb, the lips that gaped and uttered him head to toe, the what that made him ugly or smart or handsome and then (as you lay dying) the afterbirth, the cage of breath, the blood, the aftermath. -FOR E. L. , FEBRUARY II, 2005 45 ANTI-SONNET Fifteen years in the sweet-scented meadow, its grasses restlessly balancing tendrils and tips of light, and the ocean juggling the sky in bits and pieces, and the cattails crinkling in the yellow heat .