Thought Trafficking

Happy Election Day, Alberta
April 23, 2012, 3:07 pm
Filed under: Canadian politics, observations, Reading | Tags: , , , ,

On the subject of Canadian politics, a Didionesque collocation in this article on the CBC:

The bill for three nights at the Savoy last June set back taxpayers $1,995, or $665 a night. The government still had to pay for a night at the hotel she rejected, costing an additional $287.

An orange juice Ms. Oda expensed from the Savoy cost $16.

In last month’s budget, the Canadian International Development Agency suffered cuts that rang in this year at $380 million.

In other news, we had fresh rhubarb from the garden for dessert last night, and today there is snow in the forecast. I can see a blooming magnolia tree from my office window.


April, naked and otherwise.
April 13, 2012, 3:08 pm
Filed under: observations, poetry, Reading | Tags: , , ,

In keeping with my citation-heavy blog posts of late, and since April is National Poetry Month (whatever that means in the grad scheme of things), I wanted to post a few selections from Phyllis Webb’s Naked Poems, a group of poems that is hard to find outside of anthologies and special collections.

From Suite I

to establish distance
between our houses. 
It seems
I welcome you in. 
Your mouth blesses me
all over.
There is room.
From Non-Linear
I am listening for
the turn of the tide
I imagine it will sound
an appalled sigh
the sigh of Sisyphus
who was not happy
From Some Final Questions
What do you really want?
Want the apple on the bough in
the hand in the mouth seed
planted in the brain want
to think “apple”
I don’t get it. Are you talking about
process and individualtion. Or absolutes 
whole numbers that sort of thing?
But why don’t you do something?
I am trying to write a poem.
Listen. If I have known beauty
let’s say I came to it

And just because, some wisdom (?) from my father, that someone–either my mother or myself–scribbled in a cookbook after her said it a few years ago:

Nothing wrong with poetry as long as you wash your hands afterwards.

In other news, the sun is bright in the mornings and the nights are chilly. This summer I will try to re-learn Spanish, and I would love suggestions for movies or radio stations or books that I should use. Today, my first free Friday in what seems like a long time, I will try to go to Jumah in a new place, and I am full of hope and good feelings for that. Lots of simple future in my language.


Just Deserts [sic]
April 12, 2012, 2:50 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

Removed from its geo-ecological referent, the terrain became a trope, a cipher signifying deficiency, lack, absence. ‘Desert’ henceforth became ‘any place lacking in something’.

-Catrin Gersdorf, The Poetics and Politics of the Desert: Landscape and the Construction of America