Daily Archives: January 30, 2019

Two poems by Miranda Lynn Barnes

I am not a silent poet

He showed me the film

of a woman whose tongue had been cut out,
so she could never tell, and whose hands
had been cut off and replaced with branches,
and he told me how I should be thankful
for what happened to me, the experience of it,
like his friend, the tiny blonde ecstatic
in her swings, who once, saturate in mania
had said that she was blessed.

He said, it was “beautiful, so beautiful,”

and it was beautiful, the cinematography
a panning sweep into the swamp
where she motioned with the antlers
she had for wrists, her face the agony
of hopelessness, the deep red wound
of her mouth, round in its lack
of voice, while they gleefully took
everything from her mute and mutilated

oh, but beautiful, beautiful—
the cream-coloured dress, the layers of fabric
trailing in dirt as they perched her
atop the stump…

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At Your Feet by Ana Cristina César, reviewed by Clara B. Jones

I am not a silent poet

At Your Feet
Ana Cristina César
Katrina Dodson, Ed.
Brenda Hillman, Helen Hillman, & Sebastião Edson Macedo (translators)
Parlor Press
103 pp

cesar150Reviewed by Clara B. Jones experimenting with book review form…

“In literature, it is only the wild that attracts us.” Henry David Thoreau

Who is the author? Ana Cristina César (1952-1983, suicide*) was active in Brazil during the 1970s. Her work has been categorized as avant garde, a term usually reserved for visual artists and writers who are active politically, usually, in leftist groups or movements. According to Brenda Hillman, César was born and raised in Copacabana, Rio de Janeiro, in a religious, middle-class family. Conducting research on “Ana C,” as the poet was called in her circle and among her followers, I did not discover that her formative years were marked by trauma or dysfunction. However, in an academic paper, Lúcia Villares (1997, Portuguese…

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