Jen Schalliols Comments
I enjoy writing the occasional warped love poem. I use a lot of martial conceits in these pieces, a lot of violence. This poem contains the idea of the weird effects we have on each other, turns it into damage, and suggests that whoever destroys more, wins. Ah, lamour
I wrote this poem back when I was doing lots of dance, and I was working a bit with landscapes, especially the one surrounding me at the time (what up, Kenyon!) The grounding is what gives the height, or the capability to move upwardsI like that.
When I wrote this, I had been preparing a sizable manuscript and was writing primarily about the bodyI think you can find it in basically everything I write, still. I had all these pieces talking about the regenerative properties of the physical, the resilience, etc., but it was really satisfying to write this piece to pair with those, because thats the other side of it, isnt it? Some of us get better. Some of us crash out.
You dont want to read this
The best part of this poem is that the person I wrote it for no longer remembers this incident, which I get a kick out of, because it illustrates just what I was getting at, the idea of transference of memory, of giving someone something like that, which gets carried forward in their little internal catalogue from then on out. At the time, the people involved were super-disturbed, and the way they told the story was horrifying. I dont think I resented them telling me by any means, but I know there have been times when someone will share, say, a particularly grim news story with me, and Ill think, great. Now I cant un-know that. Now I have that forever. What bothered me was how the human elementthe fence, primarily, but also the people walking through the woodskilled the animal, and those impositions are so minor compared to, say, construction and hunting and pollution, etc., etc., the whole gamut. I had very recently lost a wonderful friend in a horrible accident involving a train, and the response was similar in a senseI was mad at trains, even conceptually, at how our life was now able to move so fast it was lethal, even in these small ways: by walking out on the wrong bridge, walking through the woods, by, you know, being a part of the world at all. It wasnt a matter of railing against technology, but just a grievingour lives are loaded. Its dangerous.
First Step Triolet
The form of the triolet is so simple, just paring down to basic parts and repetitions, but then, ideally, becomes more than the sum of its parts. Same with breathing, same with focusing on that function before taking on anything more demanding (sestina, anyone?)