Jenne' Andrews is an American poet. She has three published chapbooks including the recent Blackbirds Dance in the Empire of Love, Finishing Line Press 2013.

A full-length collection, Reunion, Lynx House Press, was published in 1983; after a long hiatus to raise Golden Retrievers in Colorado, recent work has appeared in The Passionate Transitory, Belletrist Coterie, The Adirondack Review and Vox Populi, a journal of culture, politics and poetry published and edited by the august Michael Simms.

A bilingual collection of "Italiana," Bocca, Voce, Delirio, with translations by Lorenzo Luciani, will be released by Finishing Line at the end of 2016 and her latest collection, And Now, the Road, a finalist for the Autumn House prize in 2014, will be released by Salmon Poetry Ltd, Ireland, a highly regarded international house, Jessie Lendennie, Publisher, circa 2017.

Andrews holds the MFA in Creative Writing/Poetry from Colorado State University, is a literary fellow of the National Endowment for the Arts, and was full-time Poet in Residence for the St. Paul Schools from '74-78. She lived in St. Paul from 1971-78 during the first wave of the Twin Cities literary renaissance, and spent the summer of 1973 in Reggio Calabria, Italy.

The poet lives in northern Colorado's Poudre River Valley with her husband, fiction writer Jack Brooks; the couple has recently imported two British Golden Retrievers and expects a litter in June-- see the Ardorgold website for details. Contact: jenneandrews2010@gmail.com .

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Poem for One Shoot Sunday...

Alone in a Motel Room with an Old Royal Typewriter

Always some reassurance when you break out
the old Royal
when you hit the return lever you've completed something
like Woolf says you have to do
you've unburdened yourself of your meaning

Managed to take the gags from your mouth and unstop
the cotton plug of your tongue
that hung itself there after you looked out the window
at midnight
where lovers  copulated
against a parked car
then walked away from each other

This moment
on the scrim of time,
that you witnessed it
meant something, you were sure of it
and so as is your habit
you wrestled it into words, something derivative
like "two lovers diverged on a wounded road"..
banging the return lever again
with a musketeer's flourish
and to make the sound of an exclamation point
in the very air.

Writing is debilitating.
Dust gathers in your hair
the hours either fly or drag
life teems in the streets below you
storms come and go,
entire seasons,
coffee grows cold in the cup
as a writer's coffee would

You stuff a stale eclair
down your throat
amping up your heart disease
try again, but moments later
heave the old typewriter into the street

You still ache
you are still pregnant
with a late-term  800 page novel very much like
Franzen's Freedom-- too dark to read-
nosing into the birth canal, breaking your water
and then hiding itself under your ribs

You drape yourself in your room's wine-stained curtains
and follow the typewriter
falling piano for words, falling woman,
into oblivion's elated  hands.

copyright Jenne' R. Andrews 2011


dustus said...

The introduction of Woolf in the first stanza sets a tone regarding the search for meaning, which I believe the speaker accepts through her struggles— realizing a continuation of life through time (pregnancy). The fixations of the speaker are very telling and heartbreaking when considering the desperation of time, place, and predicament. "falling woman" = perfect phrase to lead the final line. It is the typewriter which falls in the street; she falls into oblivion.

Brian Miller said...

ha. writing is a demon...and you got it bad...some fabulous imagery..falling piano, bang...quite the poetic journey you took us on...

JackAZ Photography said...

Wow! You took me so far, and did it all with near centuries old technology. Great writing!

Anonymous said...

Such a hard, clear, poignant poem about the guts of writing for which the battered Royal in the challenge picture is such a great metaphor. Writing as flamenco-dancing, staccato-loud and -sharp, physically draining (how easy it is now to type on computer keyboards -- to easy). It really is a birthing process, usually stillborn or aborted, though once in a while something really true to the heart gets through the words. And if there are lines more true of a writer's end, I haven't seen them recently:

You drape yourself in your room's wine-stained curtains
and follow the typewriter
falling piano for words, falling woman,
into oblivion's elated hands.

-- Wonderful! Brendan

Steve Isaak said...

Perfect, multi-layered, all that. Stunning stuff.