We, Beasts by Oana Avasilichioaei: A pre-reading sampler

On Tuesday, March 19, I’ll be reading with Oana Avasilichioaei at Montreal’s Argo Bookshop. The event will celebrate our respective poetry collections published in 2012: Oana’s We, Beasts (Wolsak & Wynn) and my Looms (Shearsman Books). If you’re in Montreal on March 19, please join us.

Wolsak & Wynn, 2012

Wolsak & Wynn, 2012

I’ve been happily engrossed in Oana’s We, Beasts and offer here a sample prior to our reading. The poems in this collection, inspired by fairy tales and fables, have a luminous quality, despite the darkness at their core.

*
where the old road curls into pale blue sky
where rock and pine distill a blurred horizon
backs bend and are divided into valleys

glorified in a field of flags
the Tyrant marches in tight ranks
spells out MOTHER, DIGNITY, FORCE

the story goes like this:
(                                        )
(                                        )
(                                        )
only a hungry ear, a mouth
law speaks in quivers, whips

line by line months break
(here is no child’s game)
incessant in smiles the Tyrant governs
a fist of furrows, knobbed, arthritic

*

No Song

—No peasants, no sepulchres, no bones. A tower, open-mouthed, with no one above its crater.
—No soil that speaks of living, no deity that trains the dying.
—Ruins of a luxury hotel wither two hundred years in the fields. Such is a hospitality of vestiges. Such is finesse. The lastingness.
—Fearful of fevers, no one enters.
—In such peasantless fields, wounds gape uninhabited.

ARGO BOOKSHOP


Camille Martin

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