I Love the Way a Poem Becomes …


 How Is It Possible To Disagree Politically?

In the minds of others. Of course, there’s also the risk that it will become something completely unintended — the poet may also refer to this sending out as an act of faith. This morning I’m so pleased to read the outlined-becoming of one of my poems by political theorist, Ashok Karra — the act of faith returned with something new and unexpected. I wonder if this is like watching one’s child become someone else in the world?

An excerpt from Karra’s meditation:

Now “perpetrates” is a curious word: we talk of perpetrating crime, and a “lack of frugality” and “indiscrimination” seem to hint at criminal intent. But at the same time, the word itself means “to bring into being” or “to accomplish,” depending on how one wants to read the Latin word “pater” into the etymology. How is crime linked with creation?

Skipping ahead in the poem, we have a hint of how this is possible: our narrator seems to complain about her/his hand being “unsteady” and therefore “abusive” at times. The act of creating, even creating one’s own resolve, means abusing something or someone. We will return to these lines later, because there is a deep point about the conduct of politics I want to make. First I want to be clear about how it is we make decisions.

[con’t here]


Thank you, Ashok!


In other political news, I saw the Michael Moore film, “Sick-O”, recently. In spite of Moore’s transparent sentimental tactics, the film has a lot of merit. It’s intended to appeal to and inform the “general population” about the hypocrisies of the richest country in the world running our health care system as a for-profit industry. It’d be easy to knock this documentary, and I’m sure many will, for Moore’s egotism and savior-complex, but my feeling is, so what? At least he’s offering some indicative/incriminating view of the horrors the U.S. health care industry perpetrates each day in an entertainment format, one that more of the general population will likely be exposed to than any expose the news will ever do.

Hopefully, the film will inspire the average person to make new demands and study their local politicians’ promises a bit more closely. And apparently, Moore is on the attack this time as CNN has already misrepresented some of the facts from the film in an effort to distract from the film’s main thrust, and that is, we’re all at the mercy of a health care system that profits from denying treatments where ever it can. Bully for Moore and his ego, I say. I hope it’s large enough to take the hits and keep on plugging away at what is, ultimately, an altruistic endeavor on Moore’s party that could benefit us all. Get out there and see it!


2 Responses to “I Love the Way a Poem Becomes …”

  1. Jim K. Says:
    July 17th, 2007 at 2:30 am eOr could it be tunneled many ways, all somewhat true?
    Certainly Ashok got some great evocation from it. Cool digging.
    I like to think different modalities in humans are still resonant…
    A poems can be any substance, but distilled. I love a catalyst.
  2. Amy King Says:
    July 17th, 2007 at 9:36 pm eIn full agreements with you, Jim!

Education Film Poetry Politics

AMY KING View All →

Amy King is the recipient of the 2015 Winner of the Women’s National Book Association (WNBA) Award. Her latest collection, The Missing Museum, is a winner of the 2015 Tarpaulin Sky Book Prize. She co-edited with Heidi Lynn Staples the anthology Big Energy Poets of the Anthropocene: When Ecopoets Think Climate Change. She also co-edits the anthology series, Bettering American Poetry, and is a professor of creative writing at SUNY Nassau Community College.

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