Tag Archives: war poetry

Poetry: Garden In The Iran-Iraq War

In this time, happy branches bow
with young fruit so heavy
limbs must be lopped    off the trunk.      God needs to
borrow another son.    Sisters, it’s this,
we say, or your whole garden. And you—      you will want to hide
your fruit behind the family’s coats in a hall closet—you will want
your sons to stay still, buried
under your long coats, close—their bodies soft. Breathing,
maybe curled up, your boys will wait in a cracked suitcase,
or a wooden box,     just for the time
no bomb siren shakes
your trees. No, no one ever really knows.     Imagine
a night your courtyard’s lit by the fire of burning

oranges still clinging to their branches. Remember, this whole
orchard could burn.

-Aliah Lavonne Tigh, Matter

Reading of Ilya Kaminksy’s “Maestro”

Have you followed me on Soundcloud? I’ve begun a process of reading favorite poems (mostly from contemporary poets) there. Recently I did a reading of Ilya Kaminsky, whom I had the great honor of seeing in person at a reading in LA.  Kaminsky is a Russian immigrant whose poems deal often with the traumas of his native land, and he’s attained success incredibly early in life because his work absolutely bleeds power and music. I read “Maestro”, the third poem in his Dancing in Odessa collection, which he signed for me.

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