27. Hanging Leaves

Am working on a new series of poems, a couple of which I’ve read out at local open mics. Not ready yet to talk about them lest their shape be bent by what someone might say, but am up tonight in advance of a trip to D.C. to visit my Kid the Journalist. Sometimes I am late to the game but the story of the Kurdish kid from Syria who washed up on the Turkish beach really got to me.

Alan Kurdi

And I can’t go into my youngest daughter’s room just to look at her sleeping, since she sleeps most nights at her Mother’s house. I will say that the response to the Beirut/Paris terror acts and the welcoming (at least in THIS state) of Syrian refugees has given me hope that people are becoming more human. My own response to these two particular events has shown to me either my own selective grief, or my captivity to media that would value some lives over others. This kind of self-knowledge is alchemical gold. Now for the latest in the new series:


About Splabman

SPLAB and Cascadia Poetry Festival founder Paul E Nelson wrote American Sentences (Apprentice House, 2015), Organic Poetry (VDM Verlag, Germany, 2008), a serial poem re-enacting the history of Auburn, Washington, A Time Before Slaughter (Apprentice House, 2010) and Organic in Cascadia: A Sequence of Energies (Lumme, Brazil, 2013). Founder of the Cascadia Poetry Festival, in 26 years of radio he interviewed Allen Ginsberg, Michael McClure, Anne Waldman, Sam Hamill, Robin Blaser, Nate Mackey, Eileen Myles, Wanda Coleman, Brenda Hillman, George Bowering, Joanne Kyger, Jerome Rothenberg & others, including many Cascadia poets. He lives in Seattle and writes at least one American Sentence every day. https://www.paulenelson.com. Co-Editor of Make It True: Poetry From Cascadia, he is in year five of a twenty year Cascadia Bioregional Cultural Investigation. www.CascadiaPoetryFestival.org (Oct 12-15, 2017, Tacoma, WA)
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9 Responses to 27. Hanging Leaves

  1. thanks Paul. Among Others recently out is about grief and resiliency. thanks for being human, thanks for being you. This (false flag terrorism and the very real deaths it produces) is a difficult topic to come public about.

  2. Saundra says:

    This poem….chilling. Thank you for your continued spiritual-intellectual search. Honored to
    Know you and your work

  3. Keli Osborn says:

    Mercy. Thank you.

  4. jaye Ware says:

    There are so many similar grave memories over the years from around the world and mankind remains unkind.

  5. Marilyn Stablein says:

    Om Shanti, Shanti, Shanti…

  6. joe says:

    Nice work Paul. We know what they boy represents. The image faded from the news because there is no counter argument, no shit storm of debte. It was the Protestant and Catholic mothers of Northern Ireland who came into the streets with pictures of their dead children that turned the tide in a conflict we thought would never end. Remember Emmet Till, he started the modern civil rights movement in this country, just a picture, and his mother crying by the casket, and no easy way to turn the page. I forgot about this picture, lost it in a thousand others, lost in the thousand discussions.

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