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 .

Saturday, November 19, 2011

New Poem: Permit Light, for Dverse Poetics and Beyond

Hi fellow DVersians:  Happy Holidays...  I love what Sheila Moore posted for today's prompt.  Change.  Seemingly an immense subject and yet one resonant with everyone.  I'm posting something I'm currently working on which seems to be about embracing the flow of change-- as Shelley and Sheila put it, mutability.  I am a self-diagnosed control freak, ever slipping into trying to arrange everything, to get things to stay where I think they should, be what I think they should be and so on.  Another way to put it is that I too grew up in the most chaotic of possible homes and chaos meant that no one was in charge and that I had to step up.  But nearly everything is beyond our control, including many aspects of ourselves and our mortality.  I think coming to terms with this is also what has drawn me to Rilke's work and my profusion of "Rilke Variations".

 The poem below is something of a palimpsest-- a text written over other text, in that I used a poem of Linda Gregg's, Let Birds, as inspiration.

photo Stuart Codington Andrews

Permit Light

After Let Birds, Linda Gregg

Permit a necklace of absolution
to show forth in the mirrors
of morning, with its abacus of worlds;

Allow light to send an arcing rapture
over the stiff and dappled fields.

Ride the mare to the mountaintop
to taste the ether of fear;
descend imperfectly, tense and
self-rebuking at the folly
of climbing so far.

Welcome the magnum
mysterium snow
in its camisole of diamonds;
prepare the feasting table
for an unintelligible guest.

Permit need and its indelible
loneliness, so that
the sky-blue moths collected
in mason jars are neatly arrayed
in the bone-cellar.

Now, let grief.


 copyright Jenne' R. Andrews 2011 all rights reserved.


Brian Miller said...

ha not heard of this form jenne...abacus of the world is a cool phrase...there is def some shifting emotions in it, from the challenge to face the fear in the mountain to regret and ultimately grief...i like the mason jars at the end too...it leaves a very nice visual...

Claudia said...

tight write jenne...
..the sky-blue moths collected

In Mason jars are neatly arrayed
in the bone-cellar...gave me shivers

Brendan said...

You show your mastery with unabashed nods to your mentors, whether you've only read them or swum their seas. My most influential poet, Jack Gilbert, was married to Linda Gregg (for 8 years, I believe). His voice is very much behind my poem at d'Verse, so in the the strange confluence of tides we sing to, your poem resonantes with something my favorite poet clearly and dearly loved. He called it elsewhere "harm and boon in the meetings" -- meaning, I think,

...Permit need and its indelible
loneliness, so that
the sky-blue moths collected

In Mason jars are neatly arrayed
in the bone-cellar.

Masterful as always -- Brendan

Anonymous said...

Agh--Jenne--I wrote a long comment that then got lost.

The gist of it was--and I won't say it so well--is that I think is just a terrific poem--the beginning absolution necklace is gripping==the end is especially powerful, not just the bone cellar and the moths, but the Let Grief. Very poignant and universal and powerful.

My one quibble with the poem comes in the stanzas about the bread==particular the consecration coupled with the arduous yearning of the dormant trees. Each image is beautiful but you are building metaphors on metaphors here, and I think you want to be careful of not diluting the force of the others, or almost parodying your own style. I hope I'm not overstepping boundaries here--because I think it's a terrific poem and I love all your work--I am tremendously impressed-- but you are so powerful that you may want to check it at moments, to keep the full force.

Only a thought here. It's wonderful. K.

Mary said...

so many beautiful stanzas in this poem that I couldn't begin to name a favorite. Stunning write.

Heaven said...

Beautiful words.. how magical is your pen.

I love the recasting of the bread and collecting sky-blue moths ~

Anonymous said...

so stark and sad.

i like the same lines Brendan liked

jen revved said...

Many thanks and to K.-- your comments are absolutely spot on-- I had the same thought-- I think it's much better now. Very cogent observations and your taking the time means so much...xxxj

Anonymous said...

Thanks--I didn't mind the recasting of the bread--I just thought the consecration took us too far from the arc of the poem, which is really an ascent and then a deep descent. They were also good stanzas though, so make sure that the new version is what you really want!

I do tend to feel like I go on too long, so generally, in my case, cuts are good. But I can't say the same works for you!

K .

Anonymous said...

Hi Jenne,

Hard to say but I think I like the shorter version. I love the two new stanzas, but I feel like the poem is more concentrated without them, and more urgent. But I really don't know. The two stanzas are wonderful, and I understand that the consecrate somehow goes with the absolution, and I love the love and the psalm in the throat, so it really is very hard to say. All good. I'll keep thinking about it. k.

jen revved said...

I like the thought of concentration and urgency-- thanks, k. xxxj

Kerry O'Connor said...

You writing always reflects on me so potently, and this is no exception. The image of the butterflies in the mason jar, and loneliness, is so resonant.

Anonymous said...

... this sounds like hard-earned wisdom... 'Descend imperfectly' is the centre of this one for me...the notion of allowing oursleves off the perfection hook is the best possible balm... Thank you for a refreshing and uplifting piece...

Anonymous said...

... this sounds like hard-earned wisdom... 'Descend imperfectly' is the centre of this one for me...the notion of allowing oursleves off the perfection hook is the best possible balm... Thank you for a refreshing and uplifting piece...

Mama Zen said...

Every word . . . perfect.

Victoria said...

I always look forward to reading your poetry. One of the things I especially like about this one is the use of the imperative at the beginning of each stanza. This evokes power, authority and commands attention.

Anonymous said...

Wonderful. I really like how you've revised it. See! You know best! No, but I think it works really well. (It always did.) But the movement here is lovely and the consecrate works really well now. The new stanzas run together are terrific.


jen revved said...

K.-- thanks so much for your help-- I kept the abacus of worlds because it seems to me to be evocatively ambiguous-- as are the mason jars of butterflies, I think. I greatly appreciate how much time and thought you put into an assist! You are a terrific editor! xxxj

Anonymous said...

I like the abacus of words! And ambiguity is good too.

I realize thinking of mason jars of butterflies, I have a poem about jars of fireflies, but of course, that is not very ambiguous. (Kind of commonplace.) Oh well. Thanks.

I am too tired to focus on the new one yet, but look forward to it. K.

Sheila Moore said...

this poem stirs something beyond my conscious recognition. at the risk of sounding idiotic, all I can say is that I get this but couldn't tell you why. is that weird?