Thursday, June 15, 2023

Until I run out of things to thank

...Notions of will and agency aside, that's what I think we're doing here: participating in creation. Sometimes as pigment, sometimes as canvas receiving pigment, sometimes as a brush in an artist's hand, moving with the hand, yet exhibiting a character of the brush's own.
~Ricky Ray

For Poetry Friday, poems by Ricky Ray. I feel like students might enjoy the role animals play in his poems, and it could inspire them to write their own poetry with their own relationships to animals.

My Donkey Spirit Steps through My Body to Take Up the Slack
by Ricky Ray

At some point, the body cannot pull its cart,
struggles against the straps, sinks into the muck,

struggles again and falls. The body cannot pull the cart
so it becomes the cart, while the spirit steps down

from the seat, picks up the cart and hauls. No straps,

read the rest here


My Favorite Sweater
by Ricky Ray

The moths have come and gone again another season.
Left portals in my coats and sweaters. I hope they
had a good meal, that the relics of sweat didn't cause them

too much indigestion. They even supped on my favorite,
a third-hand green the color of pine, thick as a blanket,
the goats right up against me as the cold tries to stick

its hand into my chest. I hope they ate well enough
to bear another generation without the hunger
and suffering too many have known. Another hand

would hunt them down and smack the light
from their lamps, but today, as the Christmas sun
makes its five-minute visit through my north window,

read the rest here


Sometimes the Work Comes to You
By Ricky Ray

A herd of horses gathered outside my cabin, their hoofbeats steady as a bonfire crackling green logs. At the same time I could hear them bent to the earth, nipping the young grass. It was the wrong season. I wore two sweaters. In my dream, from across the lake, a wolf howled to remind me of a wound left open in the soul. My blood flew with his howl. Then it turned in the air like a flock of pigeons and came back. The wolf sat beside me and watched. I asked to borrow his nose.

Caught the scent of decay and followed it to my heart.

read the rest here


Michelle Kogan has the Poetry Friday round-up. Thanks, Michelle!


Linda B said...

Well, it felt as if the more I read the poems, the deeper I went, the many layers I saw, Tabatha. I enjoyed the newness of his ideas, like the way he wrote of the sweater and the moths yet it was more a sharing his life, even his memories, with them rather than railing against the damage. I copied this part, also love that the word, in a different meaning here: "my mind unravels /attempting to recall. is connected to woven sweaters! Thanks for introducing to this new poet. Thanks and Have a happy weekend!

Carol Varsalona said...

Tabatha, I enjoyed reading the two poems from a poet I was not familiar with. This line stood out: "He said it was time to stop writing poems and start living them." Have a wonderful Father's Day Weekend.

Michelle Kogan said...

Ricky Ray's wonderful-such a turning of words he feels them all out form inside and so naturally, and with surprises in there too. I liked this too, "moving with the hand, yet exhibiting a character of the brush's own." Thanks for sharing all Tabatha!

Patricia Franz said...

Wow, I loved this poet's visuals - his animals, his clothing. Thanks for sharing him with us.

Bridget Magee said...

Oh, I'm inspired by Ricky Ray's poems, Tabatha. Thanks for sharing him with us. :)