Recently, Peter Cole and Forrest Gander gave a reading at McNally Jackson. I was particularly struck by how Cole’s poetry was infused with the more ornate language of medieval Hebrew which Cole translates into fluid and musical English. For Valentine’s Day, I can’t think of a better love poem, one that considers love in a thoughtful manner of the everday, than this poem:
(Valent)lines for A.
What law and power has blessed me so
that in this provocation of flesh
I have been wedded to gentleness?
Delicacy of an intricate
mesh of our thought and meals and talking
has brought me to this exaltation
of syllables and a speechlessness–
to December dusk, and desk, and skin
in the amber of our listening.
Dawn again pink with munificence;
heart again blurred by its ignorance;
toward you in that equation I turn–
and you, in turn, invovle our being
spun like wool from which soul is weaving
a use for that useless opulence.
Doing and making–the end served by
what it is we make, and what we do,
is what has made me: making and you.