Ricardo and Isabel Nirenberg since 1998.
Poems by J R Solonche
AFTER A POEM BY ZHO LI
This afternoon's sunlight lies half in the window and half outside.
Alone, I, half in myself and half outside myself, have only myself to define me.
The world turns silent, so I in turn turn my silence on the world.
I aim it skillfully. I have a thousand arrows in the quiver of my silence.
My bow is made from the strongest tree that grows in the silent forest.
Of those who have spoken, whose word should I accept?
Of those who have spoken, whose word is best?
All right. Let the window listen to this old recluse
who will not open the door to a guest for fear
he comes only to ask the way to another's house.
AS BAI JUYI DID
As Bai Juyi did,
I would like to read
my poems to an old
and change any line
she does not understand.
THE BEGGING CUP
(After an Anonymous Chinese Poem)
A handful of clay
and a birch twig
for a handle.
FROM WANG CHANGLIN: THE THIRD TYPE OF THEFT
Geese fly over the lake,
half a long vee, plus one.
G'hanhk, g'hanhk. I feel an ache.
Nothing more to be done.
IN HIS INTRODUCTION
In his introduction
to five poems,
Su Tung-p'o writes,
"I got drunk
I would be clever
but not truthful if
in the introduction
to this poem
"I wrote a poem
and got drunk
feels better than
five glasses of wine.
Five-time Pushcart as well as Best of the Net nominee, J.R. Solonche has been publishing poetry in magazines and anthologies since the early 70s. He is coauthor of Peach Girl: Poems for a Chinese Daughter (Grayson Books) and author of Beautiful Day (Deerbrook Editions) and Heart's Content (Five Oaks Press). He lives in New York's Hudson Valley with his wife, the poet Joan I. Siegel and nine cats, at least three of whom are poets.
His work has appeared frequently in Offcourse.