Saturday, February 14, 2009

A Short Season of Other Poets: Katy Evans-Bush

No Strings

Let’s celebrate no
strings: those things
that tie you down,
bind you up,
attach you to
somebody who,
every time they move,
you jerk.
Let’s rejoice in no
knots tied: no eternity,
no double hitch; no
slip. No tangled webs,
no getting caught
in a loop,
nothing entwined.
When you talk
into your tin can, no one’s
at the other end.
There is no end
of the line, the rope.
No reins, no golden thread,
no tether, nobody
holding on,
or back, or forth,
or letting go.
No piece of ribbon,
no love letters,
nothing holding
your shoes together,
no moorings
or anchor, no leash,
no cord:
umbilical, silken,
or rip-

'No Strings' is an unpublished - until now! - poem from a poet friend of mine, Katy Evans-Bush, who has the rare distinction of being only the second poet ever to have stayed at my house for the weekend (and regretted it ever since, I imagine). (Since I know you're all itching to ask, the first ever poet to have stayed with me for the weekend was Peter Mortimer, of Iron Press fame, and he definitely regretted it!)

That's the cover of her debut poetry collection, Me and the Dead, above.

Born in New York City, no less, Katy has lived in London since she was 19. Her poetry and essays have been published on both sides of the Atlantic. She is a regular contributor to the Contemporary Poetry Review and writes the literary blog Baroque in Hackney. Her debut poetry collection, Me and the Dead, is published by Salt.

Katy E-B opens A Short Season of Other Poets on Raw Light. Other poets to be featured will remain a secret. Come back regularly to see who else will appear on these pages. Another poet - and poem - to follow very shortly!


Michelle said...

Yay! Thanks for posting Katy's poem, Jane. A great way to start the day.

Ms Baroque said...

Jane, I try never to regret anything. (!)

Readers, I can tell you right now that Jane has some of the cutest kids I've ever seen - and I've seen some kids, let me tell you.

Thanks very much for making me your first guest poet, Jane, an honour I'm sure, and I look forward to seeing the others.

Jane Holland said...

My kids are extraordinarily cute, yes. I keep the little blighters that way by whipping them soundly every morning, then covering them with surfboard wax. Works a treat!

[Waits for a call from Social Services.]

Actually, I was called into school about my twin boys (6) a few weeks back and told they are now officially the worst-behaved children in the place.

I found it hard to believe that our mild-mannered D. could be so very bad, but on closer investigation discovered that his main crimes are 'constant singing' - typically from feel-good musicals such as Bugsy Malone or The Sound of Music - and refusing to follow their paradigm in written exercises. So they ask for a letter to Aunty Mabel about his holiday and he produces a poem about the incredible snowman.

Personally, I think the kid's a genius. But that's institutions for you.

Good to have your poem here, Katy. 'No Strings' attached!

BarbaraS said...

*sigh* I'm right with you there Jane on the 'constantly following their own curriculum thing' with the kids.

It's a shame we have to send them to school, but on the other hand, it's the only way I get anything done...

Great poem, KEB.

Jane, look forward to seeing what else emerges :)

Michelle said...

Anyone who produces an incredible snowman poem instead of a letter to Aunty Mabel about his holiday gets my vote.

Rachel Fox said...

It is a lovely poem...really lovely. I like the bind and the jerk and the holding on and the letting go and the shoes...oh no, I like it all. It all ties up really well - neat, clever and both tight and loose at the same time (and so clever again!). Ah ha!

Ms Baroque said...

Ah, thanks people. Well at the moment I'm all for kids being able to at least go with the flow enough to get along with other people and not make everything ten times harder for themselves. And grownups too.

Glad you guys liked the poem.