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Robert Arthur Reeves

Grade A: we know her

November 22, 2015

Written in Albuquerque (406 Girard SE), May 1999.  My son Malcolm, living in Chicago, sent me a poem full of African imagery without knowing I’d recently fallen in love with an African woman.  It felt like we were mystically writing about the same person.  When I wrote this, she was camping in Utah ... hence the “trail,” the “climb,” the “waterless reaches.”  Published in my books Too Little to Kill and Wings of the Gray Moon, and in the journal Hidden Oak.

we know her


link on link

wire on wire

she opens our raining skulls

we are quiet toward her

only a rush of fur

only a prickle of skin

announces us

she opens our clasping hands

with terror of freedom

terror of openings

trail to a treed ledge

to a look at waterless reaches

climb to a night of earth


we are quiet toward her

only the sugar of rain

only the snowbeat of death

announces us

Otros: Ferlinghetti and Two Frosts

November 15, 2015
The first complete book of poems I ever read was Ferlinghetti’s A Coney Island of the Mind, and I still go back to it, or…

Grade A: An Unearthing

November 1, 2015
Written in Albuquerque (406 Girard SE, living with Leora Reeves, teaching at UNM and T-VI), spring 1998:  addressed to Joe Rich, RIP.  Parts of this…

Otros: Emerson & Everson

October 25, 2015
I find Ralph Waldo Emerson’s prose to be turgid and pompous and never to say much worth remembering, but he was also an incisive poet…

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Sari Krosinsky

The Mythology of A God's Life

October 25, 2015

Irene is mistaken when she supposes Kavi to be Indian in the opening poem of "A God's Life." The main inspiration for the mythology of "A God's Life" is the Mihr Yasht, a section of the Avesta, sacred Zoroastrian text, but Kavi isn't a Zoroastrian god either. He's part of an imagined proto-Indo-Iranian pantheon, based partly on a study of existing theories in linguistics and comparative mythology, partly on my own interpretation of sacred texts in English translation, and partly on the idea that the earliest poems (in the chronology of the story) are occurring at a moment when a new greatest-of-all god is displacing the old gods — not only lowering their position in the hierarchy, but beginning an evolution that culminates (in later religions) in the belief that they never existed. 

Mithra the character is Mithra as the ultimate spy god, and Kavi is one of his many spies: "Mithra, the lord of wide pastures, proves an undeceivable spy and watcher for the man to whom he comes to help with all the strength of his soul, he of the ten thousand spies, the powerful, all-knowing, undeceivable god." (Mihr Yasht X.46, translated by James Darmesteter, "The Zend-Avesta." New Delhi: Atlantic, 1990. Vol. 1, page 131.) The epithets about Mithra's thousands of ears and eyes are understood as representing his spies. In "the divorce," the eye closing on Mithra's helmet is Kavi.

The gods of other pantheons make appearances here and there, often in ways that twist several mythologies together. The bit about gods communicating by burning letters is an imagined extension of burnt offerings, which of course manifest in various ways in many religions. 

The Making of "A God's Life" and "Courting Hunger"

October 8, 2015
I've been working on "A God's Life" and "Courting Hunger" since 2004. The following background notes on the writing of the books are reposted from…

New Books: Courting Hunger and A God's Life

September 26, 2015
The two books I've been working on over the past 11 years are at last ready to be released in November. Through fictionalized autobiography, "Courting Hunger"…


July 9, 2015
One of my favorites by Araldia, titled "Crescent Moon," but I always think of it as "the sea creature" or "the pink crustacean." I've been…

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