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Save PBS and Sesame Street

How can a party that touts NO CHILD LEFT BEHIND as their educational mantra seriously consider cutting funds for Public Television programs like Sesame Street?

Yet, that’s precisely what Republican leaders apparently want to do.

Don’t let them. Sign the petition at MoveOn if you think our children and grandchildren’s future is worthy of society’s investment.

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Robert Creeley

Early Robert Creeley Poems

I’m not sure whether I like Creeley’s “I Know a Man” because Mike has quoted it to me a couple of times or just because it appealed to me. Turns out, though, that it’s one of Creeley’s most famous poems, as discussed in great detail here:

I KNOW A MAN

As I sd to my
friend, because I am
always talking,—John, I

sd, which was not his
name, the darkness sur-
rounds us, what

can we do against
it, or else, shall we &
why not, buy a goddamn big car,

drive, he sd, for
christ’s sake, look
out where yr going.

The casual, conversational style of the poem is typical of the early poems I’ve read so far. Considering Creeley became friends with a number of the Beat Poets, perhaps it’s not entirely coincidental that the poem sounds like an advertisement for Kerouac’s On the Road, managing to convey both the sense of darkness in that work as well as the central metaphor of driving, and, aptly enough, the need to watch out while driving.

Somehow it seems typically American (Or is just that we’re so damned good at it?) to try to chase away the dark side of life by buying big, expensive cars and driving fast as hell. Isn’t that why almost all male, mid-life crises are accompanied by a sports car, with or without beautiful young babes?

Thematically, “Mind’s Heart” is perhaps even more typical of Creeley’s early poems:

MIND’S HEART

Mind’s heart, it must
be that some
truth lies locked
in you.

Or else, lies, all
lies, and no man
true enough to know
the difference.

For someone who seemed rather unlucky in love, Creeley certainly wrote about it a lot. And while this poem’s not about romantic love, per se, that may be precisely why it appeals to me more than some of the poems that are clearly about romantic love.

While there’s certainly no earth-shattering revelations here, it does fit quite well with Creeley’s opening statement that, “With Robert Duncan I’m committed to the hearth, and love the echoes of that word. The fire is the center.”

Sometimes the simplest statement, gnomic wisdom, as it were, is the best reminder of our deepest truths.