December 21, 2007

Looking for a Reviewer

Are you interested in writing book reviews? A New York-based online journal is looking for someone to review Katherine E. Young's chapbook, Gentling the Bones. I'm a fan of her work--if I weren't her neighbor and therefore a bit biased, I'd review it myself. So if you're interested in getting some good new poetry in the mail and adding to your clip portfolio, backchannel me. Here's a sample poem:

CENTRALIZED HEATING
Moscow, Russia

When the heat resumes its liquid journey
through iron casings bent like whalebone stays
to fit a waist of air, I read the death
notices: “Died from burns suffered when ice
gave way above a ruptured heating pipe.”
And still they lay uninsulated pipe
because that is what they have always done.
Strange to imagine whole neighborhoods, whole

cities being bound by iron girdles
of heating lines and water mains; each year
a few unlucky souls tumble into
their ancient workings, dead of a theory
that was never quite perfected. Outside
it’s March, pale-gray, snowing. First I blow on
my cold-white fingers, seamed and broken like
the earth of some forgotten riverbed;

then I press them to the radiator,
as yet only lukewarm. Across the way,
a woman uses the new-warm water
for her wash; wet bras, girdles, lingerie
stretch rigid and plain across her window.
I hear the groan of water coursing through
pipe, the murmuring plaint of thousands of
taps turning in unison, the scream of

a child being scalded to death inside
a manhole (though that happened long ago,
in America). All that we share, I
and the washerwoman across the way,
are these heating veins, these leafless birch trees
in the yard; but I wonder if she knows
the feel of heat on my dead hands, or in
the shriveled-up place that once held my heart.


--Katherine E. Young

(This poem first appeared on BELTWAY, in the "Evolving City" issue.)

3 comments:

Julie Carter said...

Gorgeous poem.

Lisa Allender said...

Lightness, Darkness... I like the way she can juxtapose such, um, comedy, with utter horror!

btw, HAPPY HOLIDAYS, Sandra Beasley!
come read me, at My Blog at:

www.lisaallender.com
and Post a Comment if you like the new look(courtesy of great pal, and poet Collin Kelley)

Lisa Allender said...

Sandra-
I meant to say--if you visit-- you may enjoy my early December:
Dec. 7th, Dec. 8th, and maybe Dec. 11th's posts at My Blog...

Would you mind if I add a link to your
Chicks Dig Poetry?