About the Poems
by Tiffany Midge
A Poetry Manifesto of sorts:
Revise the sheaths of stalled efforts and rescue the languishing puddles of intention.
Transcend chaos by appropriating formal structures, if for anything, practice, exercise and discipline.
Burn the inner critic at the stake, watch her writhe, relish her agony.
Privilege lunacies and gospels over “safe” and “pedestrian.”
Excavate the darkness, on occasion count coup with the Duende.
Reconcile my resistance to meter. Learn how to count (more often).
Turn straw into gold, weave baskets from strange weather. As necessary, invent “strange weather.”
Read poems backwards; invert syntax often; economize when gushing, amplify when stingy.
Reinvent notions of LOVE.
Ask more questions. Solicit the guidance of children. Example: Can light be touched? Do horses dream? Do sparrows have hands?
Enrich my relationship with the mysterious. Poems don’t have to conclude or summarize or claim final authority.
Eulogize the unacceptable, refuse sensible advice, praise abstractions.
"The Monster’s Bride Questions the Motives of Her Creator": Sketched during a particularly loathsome funk. How to make sense of rejection from one who was so revered? Adored as one would adore a creator—the creator of so much splendid exchange? Our heroes and gods are fallible and limited after all. To transcend the grotesquerie of one’s imperfections is bliss! And suddenly, the fall and disappointment from that transcendence, leading to doubts and wary interrogations.
"The Draw": taken from an appointment at the Indian Health Service Clinic at Lapwai (Nez Perce) Reservation.
"Love Poem for the Inanimate": an ode of sorts to the intrigues of domestica, to marital relationships, and all that is tangled and confused and all that is praised and embraced.
"Miss Borden’s Account of Things": an assignment given by poet Mark Halliday while visiting University of Idaho’s MFA department. Students were asked to write a poem in persona—by far one of my most favorite of exercises. Over the years Miss Borden has often tumbled about in the dryer of my imagination. The nursery rhyme says “gave her mother 40 whacks” but the number of blows to both parents was far less. Today the Victorian homestead where Abby and Andrew Borden were killed 109 years ago is now the Lizzie Borden Bed and Breakfast.
"Love’s Ideal Envisioned by a Satyr": a companion piece to "The Monster’s Bride Questions the Motives of Her Creator", only instead of Dr. Frankenstein, the subject is a satyr, who is victim to delusions and supreme selfishness. Also astounding lust.