Five Cicada Response Poems

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Mid-March winter storm
No moon—no cicada song
Just soft white silence

Beneath frozen ground
Larvae are waiting to grow
Shells to escape from

I too have spent years
Living deep underground—but
Never learned to sing

Cicada singing
How long do you think your song
Goes on—forever?

We are meant to sing
In choruses—hearing you
Singing your solo
It is truly beautiful
But pointless and so so sad

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Depth Charge: Each of the above poems is a response to a poem in Japanese Death Poems that contains a reference to cicadas, their songs or their abandoned shells clinging to tree trunks and branches.

To read Songs about Sex, Death & Cicadas by Andrew Grimes Griffin, just click on the link. To download a pdf, right click on the link and select “Save link as…”

One in twenty-four

montreal wall_20131020_1

After the graveyard
Shift—you arrive bone-tired
Just an hour to sleep
Before you must work again—
I would warm your body more

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(for Cutty)

To read Songs about Sex, Death & Cicadas by Andrew Grimes Griffin, just click on the link. To download a pdf, right click on the link and select “Save link as…”

With your earthbound musk—

Autumn path Mount Royal Montreal October 2013

Reluctant—I rise
From this bed permeated
With your earthbound musk—
Walk in warm winds suffused with
The scent of decaying leaves

AGG20131019
(for Cutty)

To read Songs about Sex, Death & Cicadas by Andrew Grimes Griffin, just click on the link. To download a pdf, right click on the link and select “Save link as…”

 

The slenderest slice

The slenderest slice

The slenderest slice
Of the hopeful moon hanging
In the still blue sky
Disappearing after dark—
Were you two together then?

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Depth Charge: This poem is an increasingly tangential response to John Mackenzie’s poem Under the October Moon. Below is an earlier version that bears more traces of Mackenzie’s original poem.

The slenderest slice
Of October moon hung there
In the still blue sky—
Disappearing after dark—
Absent as you the whole night

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To read Songs about Sex, Death & Cicadas by Andrew Grimes Griffin, just click on the link. To download a pdf, right click on the link and select “Save link as…”

Insistent scalpels—trace scars

red bleeding heart of jesus

Six-year-old boy—they
Sliced open your chest—to mend
Your young beating heart
Decades later hand and tongue—
Insistent scalpels—trace scars

AGG20130926
(for Frenchman Chris)

To read Songs about Sex, Death & Cicadas by Andrew Grimes Griffin, just click on the link. To download a pdf, right click on the link and select “Save link as…”

Tender leaves on our tongues

Fuzimiao Nanjing China 2003

The first time we met
We drank loose leaf oolong tea
Quiet—curious
Tender leaves on our tongues
Together knotted and tied

We both found ourselves
In foreign territory
Forced to interpret
New words for very old things
So we loved silence the best

AGG20130928
(for 小羊)

To read Songs about Sex, Death & Cicadas by Andrew Grimes Griffin, just click on the link. To download a pdf, right click on the link and select “Save link as…”

Salt musk on my lips that tells

Montreal_Metro_Station_Laurier_20130905_194140

It is not history
Or our separate mother tongues
It’s the taste of you
Salt musk on my lips that tells
All without saying a word

AGG20130927
(for Cutty)

To read Songs about Sex, Death & Cicadas by Andrew Grimes Griffin, just click on the link. To download a pdf, right click on the link and select “Save link as…”

As close as the clouds chapbook for download

As close as the clouds (for Cutty) by Andrew Grimes Griffin

To read Songs about Sex, Death & Cicadas by Andrew Grimes Griffin, just click on the link. To download a pdf, right click on the link and select “Save link as…”