Sunday, April 29, 2007

Bob Hicok

A rare example of "leaping poetry" here from from's April daily poem. I may just order some of this guy's work... looks good!


At the desk where the boy sat, he sees the Chicago River.
It raises its hand.
It asks if metaphor should burn.
He says fire is the basis for all forms of the mouth.
He asks, why did you fill the boy with your going?
I didn’t know a boy had been added to me, the river says.
Would you have given him back if you knew?
I think so, the river says, I have so many boys in me,
I’m worn out stroking eyes looking up at the day.
Have you written a poem for us, he asks the river,
and the river reads its poem,
and the other students tell the river
it sounds like a poem the boy would have written,
that they smell the boy’s cigarettes
in the poem, they feel his teeth
biting the page.
And the river asks, did this boy dream of horses
because I suddenly dream of horses, I suddenly dream.
They’re in a circle and the river says, I’ve never understood
round things, why would leaving come back
to itself?
And a girl makes a kiss with her mouth and leans it
against the river, and the kiss flows away
but the river wants it back, the river makes sounds
to go after the kiss.
And they all make sounds for the river to carry to the boy.
And the river promises to never surrender the boy’s shape
to the ocean.


Unknown said...


You will like Bob Hicok's work.

He is a terrific poet.

Brian Campbell said...

Thanks, Greg. Your recommendation has turned that may into a must!

Andrew Shields said...

Bob is one of the best out there right now. I'd recommend one book, but they are all excellent.

Both Greg and I should put in a disclaimer: Bob is from Michigan, and so are we, so we might be biased. :-)

Brian Campbell said...

Which book is that?

I saw in his bio that he also teaches at Virginia Tech. I imagine if he had been a victim, we would have heard about it...

Andrew Shields said...

I meant that I could try to recommend one book, but since they are all excellent, it is a vain thing to pick out just one.

I emailed Bob to check on him, and he said he was fine. The shooter was a student of his, so he is probably a bit out of sorts right now ...

Brian Campbell said...

I sure would be...