Interview with Eleni in this issue
Eleni's translation of Roubaud
Drawing by Eleni Sikelianos, all rights reserved.
Excerpt from Body Clock
(SECOND HOURS RESIDUE) (public)
Chasing a minute inside an hours burrow — the second-elec
trons knocking off the burrows
a piece of an hour I mean
this piece of its index is
with ratios, reasons
old as I look, says the hour,
speaking through a woman at the counter
I would like this petal-edge of the hour to reassemble a ranunculus, to
white out portions of the hour that please us less Stand back and
look at this hour its hands waving at the out, out edges
would I if I could perfect an hour? I see the seeds dripping
from this hour jog-bear, a girl says
because I did not properly attend to it this hour has turned
tubular & wooly
someone sits next to me I begin to feel self-conscious about my hour as one would a blackened egg
These vs are for victory how
an hour prevailed They are for birds peeling off the hours surface They are
the hours thorns decorating the hours rose
the hand aches inside the hour
as if the hour were an oven
breaking the hands bones
Weve graduated to hours.
And the folds between minutes.
The crumpled folds between hours.
They keep adding dimensions to space not time. Why? The folds
the felt folds why the folds between minutes and hours.
You may wish to mention the old boogers in the bathtub. (No thanks.)
The night line descends
an hour an iron collar relaxing
into the undone
threads night nights itself
a morning, an hour arrives tense as streetlights reflected in raingutters
an hour shines like a wound
the debris of hours accumulated in the face an hour
like a wrecking ball an hour
in mid demolition a pirouette, performance, an
hour smashing, wounding the face
You speak only of an hours demolition.
Here, spicules were built. Assembled
into a needle-like house. Transparent. Airy. Gorgeous. Constructed
to withstand all time.
What? says Body.
Constructed to withstand all time. Not even the mind
can construct time
outside of time.
Eleni Sikelianos is the author of one book of nonfiction and five books of poetry, including The California Poem and The Book of Jon. Her poems have been translated into French, Spanish, Catalan, German, Arabic, Romanian, Croatian, Slovenian, and Serbian, and a selected poems (De L'histoire, du soleil, de la vision) appeared in French this fall. Forthcoming in the fall of 2008 is a new book of poems, Body Clock. Sikelianos has translated poems from the Greek and the French, as well as, in with scholars or native-language poets, the Chinese and the Russian. Among the numerous awards she has received for her poetry, nonfiction and translations are a National Endowment for the Arts Award, a Fulbright Arts Fellowship, The National Poetry Series, and a New York Foundation for the Arts Award. Sikelianos received her MFA in 1991 from what was then The Naropa Institute, where she studied with many of the most exuberant living poets of our times. She currently lives in Colorado with the novelist Laird Hunt and their daughter Eva Grace; and she teaches in the Creative Writing Program at the University of Denver.