NightWalk

building lot sign on my walk yesterday

.

the dragon sleeps already,
his owners, bent over a table,
counting money, discussing
next week’s menu in dim light,

chain by chain connects,
rows of supermarket carts, huddled up
against the wind in limpid tunnels,

billboard lights throw restless sparks
across their silvery carcasses,
pre-christmas trash
still in the gaps between their teeth,

the Intercity leaves
a shimmering bead of pearls,
hanging for a second
on the bridge, then swallowed

i walk, in & out
random patterns, tire marks,
yellow lamp light pools melt black,

a plane heads eastward, blinking,
i pluck lightbeams from it, 30 gramm slips,
stuff them in my pockets, & on darker corners

pull them out to shine the way, which
can be wordless, sometimes, i don’t mind,

nod my head, passing the dragon
on the way back, onyx now,
then turn right & ’round the field
of dozing puddles, heading home

 .

the Intercity (Express) is the german fast train, short ICE

at dVerse, Anna is tending bar, and we’re focusing on Bernadette Mayer’s Writing Experiments.. Feel free to choose one that appeals to you. 

i went for “choose a city street familiar to you, walk it, make notes and use them to create a work”

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44 responses to “NightWalk

  1. Ah – this is really lovely, Claudia – I love catching light in measurable slips in your pocket and the whole description of the train -and streets–trash in teeth. I’m thinking that I vaguely knew – she didn’t know me – Bernadette Mayers from a poetry thing I used to go too sometimes in the East Village. I am going to see if it’s the same person I’m thinking of.

    Very cool poem. k.

    • Yes – she is the person I am thinking of. She was very active in this East Village poetry scene. I was not truly a part of it – having children! – but I had a friend who was so used to see her at many events and Christmas parties annually. So interesting. k.

  2. the plucking of the lightbeams and putting them in your pocket is magic…and we should carry those little lights with us for the moments we need them…also like the dragon, ha…your treatment of the shopping carts as well is very cool…nice walk claudia…

  3. This makes me a tad jealous for I would like to walk at night, something one does not do in many American Cities. I loved the progression of the dragon … as night drew on.

  4. Such lovely and unique images… especially:

    chain by chain connects,
    rows of supermarket carts, huddled up
    against the wind in limpid tunnels,

    billboard lights throw restless sparks
    across their silvery carcasses,
    pre-christmas trash
    still in the gaps between their teeth

  5. some stellar imagery here. Esp love this –

    against the wind in limpid tunnels,

    billboard lights throw restless sparks
    across their silvery carcasses,
    pre-christmas trash
    still in the gaps between their teeth,

    superb

  6. somehow.. i never stopped painting chalk hearts on life’s walls..<<<first this, I'd not seen it before on your sidebar. I do love it so.

    As for the poem. Sometimes I pass the dragon, sometimes I engage it & sometimes it gets the better of me or I the better of it.

  7. ah, I thought the dragon was a line of shopping carts — it is the train, it seems. Your experiment was more difficult for me to follow than other writings. Or maybe I am tired. But I still enjoyed the playful image — especially grabbing light from the plane overhead. You little thief!

  8. I enjoyed the process notes ~ I specially like these lines:

    the Intercity leaves
    a shimmering bead of pearls,
    hanging for a second
    on the bridge, then swallowed

  9. …it seemed you owned the night with all these visuals Claudia… very engaging to read… “the Intercity leaves..a shimmering bead of pearls,…hanging for a second…on the bridge, then swallowed…” – loved this more… excellent..

    ..smiles…

  10. Wonderful, Claudia. I love the lines “pre-christmas trash / still in the gaps between their teeth”. I don’t think I’ve ever thought to write about a familiar street – the surrounding environment and city, perhaps – but that is a fantastic idea. And you do such a good job of describing it and weaving your story. The dragon throughout is a great touch!

  11. a plane heads eastward, blinking, i pluck lightbeams from it, 30 gramm slips, stuff them in my pockets, and on darker corners pull them out to shine the way. Brilliant!

  12. a plane heads eastward, blinking,
    i pluck lightbeams from it, 30 gramm slips,
    stuff them in my pockets, & on darker corners

    pull them out to shine the way,

    This is just SO delicious!

  13. Love these lines, Claudia:

    “yellow lamp light pools melt black”

    “i pluck lightbeams from it, 30 gramm slips,
    stuff them in my pockets, & on darker corners
    pull them out”

    And the last stanza.

  14. I love this piece. My imagination took off and went to its own fields, which to me is a good thing. I like poetry that fires my heart off into foreign lands…

  15. Hi! Claudia…
    “billboard lights throw restless sparks
    across their silvery carcasses,
    pre-christmas trash
    still in the gaps between their teeth,

    the Intercity leaves
    a shimmering bead of pearls,
    hanging for a second
    on the bridge, then swallowed…”

    Thanks, for sharing the image and your [very] descriptive, [very] beautiful poem, as you describe the Intercity (Express) is the german fast train, Which is short ICE… deedee 🙂

  16. I feel like a night walk now, with collar pulled up high and a hat for warmth. Catch some of that light in my pocket. Leave sleeping puddles lie so my feet stay dry.

    Always am fully satisfied at the table of your poetic feast, Claudia!

    xoxo from Texas!! Hope you are having fun these days and enjoying life.

    Oh and yes — those headlights of pearls hanging and falling, SO WONDERFUL.

  17. fabulous imagery, Claudia! especially liked ~

    “i pluck lightbeams from it, 30 gramm slips,
    stuff them in my pockets, & on darker corners

    pull them out to shine the way, which
    can be wordless, sometimes, i don’t mind,”

    you are always brilliant in taking the world around you and making it magical in your poetry!

    Happy New Year!

  18. I love how you are ever able to adapt a prompt, a style or a form, no matter how difficult it is to do so, to the prevalent themes you explore. Really a remarkable skill. Great write.

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