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 .

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Poem for Wednesday/One Shot...

 Meditation -- Rodin

My Invisible Arms

Je trône dans l'azur comme un sphinx incompris;
J'unis un coeur de neige à la blancheur des cygnes;
Je hais le mouvement qui déplace les lignes,
Et jamais je ne pleure et jamais je ne ris. *

I enthrone myself against the sky like an arcane sphinx
I marry a heart of snow to the whiteness of swans
I hate the movement that displaces the lines
And I never cry, never laugh.  trans. jra

From La Beaute’, Fluers du mal—Charles Baudelaire
Photo—Meditation-- Rodin

In the night I dream my arms have been taken off
By the doctor I have avoided.
You’re staying up too late, writing too much
He says, unscrewing them
And handing them to his assistant.

I reach for my clothing with invisible arms
The will to move my invisible hands
The will to speak moves my mouth
And no words cascade from my throat..

I wake, from the nightmare.  I make coffee
A rose-breasted, blushing bird alights on the fence
The green lace curtains lift and fall
Like the skirts of a soiled dove.

I enter the virtual world, invisible
Hoping to write,
To have something new to offer
In the new universe in which everyone
Wants their poetry
As fresh kill.
My hands scatter over the keys
like white crabs scuttling
into the surf.
They gather up nothing
These hands, this mind, all
Has been shut up, stilled

As if I have spoken my piece
As if I am empty.

And if it were true I am mute, dumbfounded--
If someone has severed my arms
If someone has castrated my muse

Should I not leave the house
And feast my eyes on the green hayfields,
Those things ablaze with light?

The poem in very literal French:

Mis Bras Invisible

Dans la nuit, je rêve mes bras ont été retirés
Par le médecin, j'ai évité.
Vous restez trop tard, trop écrire
Il a dit, en les dévissant
Et de les remettre à son assistant.

Je sors mes vêtements avec bras invisible
La volonté de passer mes mains invisibles
La volonté de prendre la parole se déplace ma bouche
Et pas de cascade mots de ma gorge ..

Je me réveille, du cauchemar. Je fais du café
Une poitrine rose, se pose oiseaux rougir sur la clôture
Les rideaux de dentelle verte ascenseur et à l'automne
Comme les jupes d'une colombe souillée.

J'entre dans le monde virtuel, invisible
En espérant que d'écrire,
Pour avoir quelque chose de nouveau à offrir
Dans le nouveau monde dans lequel tout le monde
Veut leur poésie
Comme tuer frais.
Mon disperser les mains sur les touches
comme les crabes blancs
Le sabordage dans les vagues.
Ils ramassent rien
Ces mains, cet esprit, tous les
A été enfermé, apaisé

Comme si j'ai parlé ma pièce
Comme si je suis vide.

Et si c'était vrai que je suis muet, stupéfait -
Si quelqu'un a rompu mes bras
Si quelqu'un a castrés ma muse

Devrais-je pas quitter la maison
Et plein les mirettes sur le vertes prairies de fauche,
Ces choses envahi par la lumière?

copyright Jenne' R. Andrews 2011 
Rodin permitted this piece to illustrate the poem quoted of Baudelaire…


hedgewitch said...

A frightening place to be, always, when one sits to write and the words won't come. Some wonderful lines in here--the reference to fresh kill is very apt--a pressure to be always producing--but the dreamlike quality is what I like best.

PattiKen said...

This is when you remind yourself, it was only a dream. Only a dream. Only a dream...

Kim Nelson said...

Any of us who writes can relate to this sense of silencing, the "elusion" of the muse. Nice write.


Brendan said...

If the words won't come, it's probably the wrong poem. But the poem you end up making of this is still gorgeous for all the silence that falls off every line. Loved the image of the armless statue; it also speaks of time's erosions on all art, maker gone, made fading, all that passion measured as armless reaches. - Brendan

Other Mary said...

Oh, yes...the nightmare of the blank page. And too, the virtual world, where everyone wants more to be heard than to hear. You express these so well!

Anonymous said...

You really capture the desperation, despair, and fear of not being able to write without writing I'd be crazy as hell