Jump to content

Poets on Couches: John Murillo and Nicole Sealey Read Anne Waldman


Recommended Posts

couches_titles_sealey_murillo5-1024x576.

The second series of Poets on Couches continues with John Murillo and Nicole Sealey reading Anne Waldman’s poem “How to Write.” In these videograms, poets read and discuss the poems getting them through these strange times—broadcasting straight from their couches to yours. These readings bring intimacy into our spaces of isolation, both through the affinity of poetry and through the warmth of being able to speak to each other across the distances.

How to Write
by Anne Waldman
Issue no. 45, Winter 1968

Perhaps I’m kidding myself about
the life I lead

Sometimes I feel I’m dying
like a lot of things I see around me

Then I turn on the TV and understand
that everything must still be moving

Music, for example, and I rush outside
around the corner to a concert

It’s so easy

Everything accessible from where I
happen to live at the moment

Things like rock concerts not too many trees on 2nd Avenue

Once, on the Sixth Avenue bus
I got a sudden sensation
I had been alive before

That I was a man at some other time
Traveling

You would think this strange if you were a woman

If I were a man right now I’d be getting out of the draft
but I think I’d want to be a poet too

Which simply means alive, awake and digging everything

Even that which makes me sick and want to die

I don’t really, you know

I just don’t want to be conscious sometimes
because when you’re conscious in the ordinary way
you have to think about yourself a lot

Dull thoughts like what am I doing ?

Uptown in a large crowd I want to sit down and cry
because everything is simple and complicated
all at once

Everyone has this feeling

Even people downtown

It is very basic to the way we are
which is why I can say “we”

A lot of drugs can change you if you want
because you too are made of what drugs are made of

In fact you are just a bundle of drugs
when you come right down to it

I don’t want to go into it
but you’ll see what I mean when you catch on

That’s not meant to sound snotty
I’m open to whatever comes along

This is the feeling I get before I take a plane

Then everything’s the same afterward anyway

All into one space and here I am again
alive still, same worries on my mind

The thing is don’t worry!
You are doing what you have to what you can

You hear from your friends
They let you know what’s happening in California, Iowa
Vermont and other places about the globe

They take you out of your little room
just like the newspapers or the news
or the man you live with

and put you in a much larger room
one in which you are in constant motion around the clock

 

John Murillo is the author, most recently, of Kontemporary Amerikan Poetry, winner of the Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award.

Nicole Sealey is the author of Ordinary Beast and received the Rome Prize. Her poem “Pages 5–8” appeared in the Fall 2020 issue.

View the full article

Michael Neff
Algonkian Producer
New York Pitch Director
Author, Development Exec, Editor

We are the makers of novels, and we are the dreamers of dreams.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Replies 0
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Popular Days

Top Posters In This Topic

Popular Days

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share












ALGONKIAN SUCCESS STORIES



WTF is Wrong With Stephen King?















×
×
  • Create New...