23 March, 2007

Joanne Kyger - "The Insurgents" - "belligerent naked Indy stalks"

The Insurgents

Surging in       like sea waves do
                Not a revolution     not belligerency

But an uprising   rising up
                            Of focused nameless opposition

                                                   Keeps you very busy
                      Farewell, I must leave, bye-bye

“The insurgency is sophisticated
              and stronger than anticipated…”

                           “My name is Isis” says a small child
                                             “and that means Egyptian Goddess”

“No it means    stupid dirty    little girl”
     says the California Secretary of Education

           Constantly create the enemy
                     Constantly create the war
                          “I’m a war president, I’m a war president”

Belligerent naked Indy stalks
   Completely without leaves

                   On a cliff above the high tide surging
                            In a huge gathering flow

                                  Can you beat THIS into submission?

                                                                                         July 20, 2004

by Joanne Kyger, first published in Night Palace as issue #96 of Sylvester Pollett's Backwoods Broadsides series. Eco-buddhist poet writing from the magical hamlet of Bolinas, CA on the southern tip of the Point Reyes peninsula, slowly slipping against the grain of the continental plate, on a long geological slide to Mexico, Joanne's poetry offers a whimsical yet unflinching take on the world. Attentive mind.

Don't miss the 10 poems from 2003 posted by Michael McClure & Ray Manzarek which are quite topical. Linda Russo edited a Kyger feature for Jacket 11; check out the interviews and Russo's intro placing Joanne in the gender poetry politics of '50s San Francisco, as well as the articles by Anne Waldman, Andrew Schelling, Jonathan Skinner & others.

Author of over 20 books, As Ever: Selected Poems (Penguin, 2002) is readily available.

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