Tuesday, 8 April 2014

A NEW POEM BY TODD SWIFT ON HIS 48TH BIRTHDAY

I've been writing poems again lately, now that I feel rather unmoored - it's been a decade or more since I was not teaching or studying or both at a university somewhere in Europe.  I posted a poem to facebook the other day that I may post here at some stage.  Turning 48 today is a mixed dish of sweet and sour.  I am very grateful and relieved to be alive.  My wife is a saint and a great friend.  I run a cool indie press.  However, my depression is bad, and I am facing lots of unspoken trials and tests currently, personal, and otherwise.  I decided to write this poem when I saw the title of a forthcoming album.  It made me want to try a "classic Todd Swift poem" from my early Montreal chapbook years, the kind of poem I might have written in 1994.  Fans (ha!) of my work will note this touches on a lot of the tropes and themes I enjoyed working with in Budavox, all the way back then; and the aim I had at the time to craft poems with the style and simple pleasing form of a ska or power pop/ new wave song.  Have fun!


MYSTERY GIRL DELUXE
It was never quite the kiss or weather.
We fell down after reading together
Simply since love is a matter of fact
At Easter; it often follows the act
Of indiscipline, the shifting feathers
That transform a swan; bars of leather
Were not our scene, but we attacked
Ideas of unison with underage tact.
We ached to wake up as F. Kafka;
Cherry-balmed lips the morning after.
It was sub-zero that April in Montreal;
The metro was blue; the turnstile
Saw us part, Walkman’s synchronised
To Orbison’s dream tears in our eyes.


April 8, 2014
poem by Todd Swift
 
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