Friday, June 13, 2008

I'm doing e's

(but only because Signs made me)

See - there,
there, where the yew tree bends,
the street ends,
there where the creek, the green,
the sweetness -

there we’ll never meet,
we’ll never be there,
We’ll never remember
these trees, these streets,
never the green sweetness,
never the “remember, when we”,
we’ll never. Never. Yet
yes, there,
there where the streets the trees the sweetness the green -
there remember me.

Remember me?
Here, the desert weeps, bereft, endless.

Sever me.
(Keep me.)
Remember me.
(Delete me.)


Reading the Signs said...

Don't say you're not pleased with this. Just don't. Talking to you, 'e' girl. Love it.

I'm trying to think of the particular quality of the 'e's. Something long, drawn-out and yearning. Keening, obviously, in this poem, and the 'e' just lends itself in a way that 'a' and 'o' wouldn't, they'd do it differently. And seeing all of them together in one piece is striking.

This is giving me a powerful message that it is obviously a good thing to ask for unusual things, because look at the results. Lawks, Anna, what have you unleashed?

Anna MR said...

Well yes okay, I am a little bit pleased with it (this said for Blogoslavia and shame tolerance, because it is frightfully embarrassing to (admit to) be pleased with one's nonsense). It is surprisingly easy to come up with e text and e sentences, but not really to finish saying things, hence the poetic form, you know. But the constrains imposed are interesting, truly (and verily I work better to order and under restraint).

Anyhow, I thank you most humbly for your praise. But you have signed your own death sentence, sweet bees' knees sees, for as your counter-forfeit I decree you must write me a piece to reveal what is the particular quality of alpha and omega, a and o - it goes without saying your only allowed vowels are a and o (and be prudent with your y usage, naughty Signs of cheating. "Yowl", for instance, would be fine, but not "happy", and that's how it stands). Naturally you should post it prominently at your own house, not hide down here like some ratty coward (e.g. me, the apology).

In your own sweet time - and I think you'll find it was in fact you who unleashed whatever it is that has been unleashed (although I blame George Perec and NMJ as well). No turning back now... although this may well be the end of the world as we know it.

Reading the Signs said...

Gaaaawd! Wot, no 'y' endings? Well that cuts down on the qualifiers and modifiers, I suppose.

But the end of the world as we know it, you should surely anticipate Mees Sees. For when the volcanic eruption that is the creative outpouring of Signs is unleashed into the unsuspecting world, even the flies do not dare to fly. Yeah, and nature itself doth hold its breath (thank you Mr. Salamun).

But do not hold your breath yet. For tomorrow is Mr. Sign's birthday bash and so it will have to rest in the earth's deep recesses until after that.

a little something for Mr Signs said...

Yes, no, absolutely no 'y' endings. It's called cheating, bad naughty Signs. And while you're a big enough artiste to cheat and get away with it, it'll be good for you to be forced to conform to awkward rules and unusual things, for, as someone once said, "... it is obviously a good thing to ask for unusual things, because look at the results..."

Oh yes. And I join the world and Mother Nature (and, no doubt, Mr Salamun) in awaiting, with baited breath, the pouring forth of the creative current of Signs, verily. Even if we do go blue whilst you celebrate the esteemed Mr Signs.

trousers said...


(that's the best I can do so far but, my word, I think you've already trounced the competition, you clever and creative soul.)

Merkin said...

Did Mr Wright leave you all the 'e's in his lipogramic will?

That's So Pants said...

Lovely poem Anna, positively bursting with e's.



Anna MR said...

housut, thank you for your most highly-valued "phew" (the e was noted and duly appreciated, dear heart). Also I hang my keyboard in shame for having left you here for so long without a reply. Disgraceful behaviour, verily, yes, and no mistake. But now I'm back and thank you, but need to point out also that there's no competition as such - more of a series of punishments and forfeits. Which is a damn fine thing for me, for surely when Signs does come up with her bit, it will wipe the floor with me. Just as well neither of us are competitive (eh, sees?).

Hoping you are well, though.


Anna MR said...

Merkin, hello and thank you for the super-interesting link (I have bookmarked it and shall read through it in due course - and I think you would enjoy it too, Signs, if you haven't yet looked). Thank you also for the word lipogram - it was one I didn't know and had to look up, which is always a delight. I may print out some business cards where I call myself "Anna MR, lipogrammaticist extraordinaire". (The word does sound a little bit like I'm having fat sucked off my hips and belly, though, so I'll have to think on it awhile.)

My regrets go to you, too, Merkin, for leaving you hanging without a reply for ever and a day. I shall try to mend my ways and mind my manners in the future, and hope you too are keeping well.


Anna MR said...

Pants, always a delight to see you, and your praise always tastes particularly sweet. Thank you. Weird thing, you know - your comment never showed up on my email notification. Are you doing some stealth commenting, or is blogger fucked again? Be that as it may, a lovely surprise to find you here. Hope you're keeping well.


Reading the Signs said...

Not competitive, seestah? I'll let you into a secret: I put it about that I'm not competitive, just a hippy at heart, doing it for love or nothing at all, but see - if you don't actually enter the race then you hang on to the illusion that really you are tops, numero uno, or would have been if you'd actually contended. It works brilliantly with all kinds of things, including poems that never get sent off. So I'm the best, I am, Anna. It's just that I haven't got round to doing the task you set - yet.

Anna MR said...

Yeeeeeees. The old "I could have been a contender" syndrome. I am aware of this aspect, although I'd still claim that I (also) suffer from an intense dislike of competitive situations. They make me feel superbly uncomfortable and unpleasant and I don't think it's (only) because I'd hate to lose.

And yes, Sister Saudade - you are the best. I'm not drumming my fingers impatiently (yet), as I'm certain the ah's and oh's will be well worth the wait.

Merkin said...

Alive and kicking, MrA.

PS did you ever get round to watching 'Night on Earth' by Jim Jarmusch?

trousers said...

ms mr, your replies are always worth the wait. Fact.

Yes, currently I am very well: will it last, I ask myself?


Reading the Signs said...

Will anything? For I have it on good authority that at any moment the whole planet could fall into destruction. Sorry, Trousers, I seem to be following you round like a slightly malfunctioning echo. Have been watching too much Doctor Who.

trousers said...

signsy (a cack-handed attempt at making it sound a bit more familiar), I never saw the first Highlander film, but I wonder if this is some kind of blogging equivalent? Jumping across blogs rather than jumping through time.....I dunno, just a thought.

Reading the Signs said...

Trousikins (ok, but not a bad attempt at diminutives go), leaping around in cyberspace must count for something I reckon, and I bet they don't yet know how to do it on planet Zob.

Anna? Hi. Don't mind us, we're just, you know.

mwuvmhjy A bit squiffy, as it happens.

trousers said...

Hahah, trousikins (and other variations) is/are funny!

So you were squiffy too - I'd had 3 pints of Franziskaner before getting back home and posting the comments in question...

Anna MR said...

Merkin - very pleased about both the alive and the kicking. No, do you know, I went and looked up "Night on Earth" online and saw a bunch of very interesting-looking trailers (and watched them, right) and thought hmmm, why have I never even heard of this flick before, I think I'll have to see it - and then promptly went and forgot about getting it from the video/dvd rental place. Man, I'm a little embarrassed but you must understand I don't tend to rent any dvds, ever, I'm completely out of the habit. Currently I'm also out of a machine to watch them with, save my beloved MacLaptop (but I need to learn how to make it double as a dvd player, as yet. Shhh, never tell anyone - but I'm actually a totally helpless dork when it comes to things techincal).

Young housut, you've only yourself to blame for the lateness of my replies again, what with all that golden sweet-talking about how my replies are worth the wait cetra (thank you kindly, good sir). Everyone else is blaming you, too. I hope that makes you feel all appreciated this fine Thursday. But on to more serious business - "no, it isn't", I must answer you. These things (feeling well) never do. However, the saving grace of it all is that feeling really crap rarely goes on unrelentingly for an entire lifetime, either. Hope this adds to the good feeling engendered by the previous remark (your guilt for my late replies, the blame put on you by the rest of Blogoslavia).

Signs of Squiff - hello. No, feel free to get legless here on these pages, I don't mind in the least. As you were...

(Rather fancy a drink now. Hmmmmm. Your fault, obviously.)

Anna MR said...

Actually – in the hindsight provided by (Jesus wept) over five years, I would probably rearrange the positioning of there where the street the trees the sweetness the green – although blogger doesn't tend to allow for fancy-schmancy positionings of words, thus rather ruining any effort the poor blogger had put into it; and I am really quite certain I would rearrange the order of the words in Here, the desert weeps, bereft, endless.. It jars, horribly. It might be better if it were Here, the desert weeps, endless, bereft.. Or even Here, the endless desert weeps, bereft.

Yes, I think I likely like the last one best.

Also – now that I'm at it – never the green sweetness jars, too. Hor-rib-ly. Perhaps it should be never the sweetness, the green?

That might be better. I could have used an editor (I'm looking at you, Signs).

And another thing: in my first reply to Signs (hello again, me ol' China), I have made The Dreaded Your/You're Mistake, which is a hanging offence in all civilized countries, and then some (and quite rightly too). I mean, I am fully aware that it is okay that it sometimes slips into one's writing (okay, not okay as such – but understandable, in a sense, if not forgivable) – but that I should have left it uncorrected and unwailed-upon in my next comment – that, that speaks more than words, more than the typo itself. Come Judgement Day, God himself (hello, me ol' China) will greet me with donning his black cap (as well he ought to).

And one more thing, oh my God but seriously. How can all this be five years ago? And how come I am this person who is up at 3:36 AM East European Summer Time, reading my own (five years) old blog post? Why is all this? Why and how? And ubi the fucking fuck sunt the fucking neige of yesteryear, I ask thee, or perhaps even more to the point, the neige of this year? Why cannot today be today, a different time from five years ago, today a place from where I merely smile wistfully at the follies of our youth, rather than wallow like some muddy creature, in the nether hells of times changing yet unchanging?

Verily, for fuck's sakes.

Anna MR said...

That should not be "in the hindsight – it should be with. So shoot me. It was late, you'll agree.

Reading the Signs said...

This is still so fucking brilliant. Still. Because some poems don't stand the test of time - they go off or lose their savour, or something. But the bird still sings here - tandanderei.

Reading the Signs said...

- and look, the re-drafting, rearranging (of poems) is never-ending. Truly. Even after (if) a poem is published there is always something one thinks could/should have been done differently.

About the passage of time I have nothing to say - it's too scary - especially looking at it down the wrong end of a 60-year-old telescope. What I like about this kind of thing is it's like a Tardis that instantly transports us back to 2008. So the last five years never happened - well not while we're here at any rate. Sorted.

Anna MR said...

Unter den Linden, tandandarei…where we'll never meet.

Well yes. I have to confess I was surprised at how little shame-tolerance activity this caused me, given the size of its potential potential to cause a lot, but I would still say shut-up! to all claims of fucking brilliance (nicely, of course, given it's you – or anyone, really, but especially you).

I do like the Tardis idea. Very much. I am glad that I've had this old thing going for such a (relatively) long time – and that here in the comments sections are stored all those things we all said. It is a journal, a shared journal of sorts. I hope they don't do any such shit someday like deciding that blogger is to be totally closed down, due to underuse as compared to facebook, or something…you know they did that with the Reader function. And something weird was done with flickr as well.

About the 60-year-old telescope, I will quote our mutual friend The Horseman – getting older is brilliant. Okay, so it's not always brilliant as such – I have to differ with him here. But it sure as all fuck beats the alternative, ye ken?

You've got me at it. Just saying. I mean the letter-restriction thing. Deary me.