Friday, February 28, 2003


Raven is masterminding our Poets Against the War event here on the campus of Universidad del Mar. Well, what he is really doing is finding the best anti-war poems of all time for us to read next Wednesday afternoon.

This means I have been squeezing the cells of the memory centers of my brain to call up the marches, the stench of tear gas, the barrels of National Guard M-1 rifles (later M-16s), the ashes of draft cards and flags on the steps of the Pentagon. And, because I am thinking about poems, I remember Robert Bly reading from THE LIGHT AROUND THE BODY in The Poetry Center at San Francisco State University, 1967:

Counting Small-boned Bodies

Let's count the bodies over again.

If we could only make the bodies smaller
The size of skulls
We could make a whole plain white with skulls in the moonlight!

If we could only make the bodies smaller
Maybe we could get
A whole year's kill in front of us on a desk!

If we could only make the bodies smaller
We could fit
A body into a finger-ring for a keepsake forever.

Raven is pulling the best poems of the worst of times out of the unconscious of the Internet.

Let’s nourish our collective memories, make our Shadow conscious, swear that we will never, ever, need to write those poems again!

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