Saturday, February 22, 2014

February 22: Poem of the Week, Larissa Szporluk, "Jack and the Beanstalk"

I spent most of the day working.  I cleaned, and I played the pipe organ.  I made enough money to put gas in my car for the week.   I also found the time to draw two new cartoons.  However, I don't have my iPad this evening, so I'm not able to include a new Confessions of Saint Marty with this post.  I'll be doubling up tomorrow, I guess.

There's really nothing else on my mind this evening.  I'm a little tired.  Tomorrow, my wife is starting a new job at church.  She's going to be working as one of the nursery attendants on Sunday mornings.  It's not a lot of money, but it will certainly help.  That's a definite blessing.

On Sunday afternoon, we're taking our kids to a sledding party.  There's going to be horse and carriage rides, hot chocolate, and, of course, sleds.  It's going to be a cold, fun day for my daughter and son.  I'm hoping it's not going to be miserably frigid.  The sledding party's only for two hours, but frostbite can happen in about 20 minutes.  If you can't tell, I'm not terribly excited about this little family outing.

Tonight, I offer you guys my poem of the week.  It's a poem by Larissa Szporluk from her collection Isolato, which won the Iowa Poetry Prize around the year 2000.  I first read this book when I was studying for my MFA.  Loved it then.  Love it now.

Saint Marty is a sucker for a good fairy tale poem.

Jack and the Beanstalk

by:  Larissa Szporluk

A father lost in the clouds,
A mother and son
toughing it out together;
their quarrel, her tossing

out the window of beans,
his beautiful things
of not street value.
During the night they sprout.

By dawn he's over the sky,
crossing a moat to a giant's castle;
father inside with a harp,
something like love going on,

a niagara of grappling sounds.
The giant is calling the shots:
Pluck here, pluck there.
Jack drops to the floor,

transformed by joy into lather.
Mother below grows tired.
Where is the gold-laying hen?
When is the family reunion?

Beanstalk fuming with drab.
God rot.  She punches the base,
lops off the vein
to their faraway songs with an axe.

Sometimes, a giant beanstalk is just a giant beanstalk

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