January Recommendations
Año Nuevo, and the Poetry Friday Roundup

Sitting Down to Another Year


In the latest issue of a literary journal called Birdfeast I found some poems I really like, including this one by Maria Nazos,  whose work I hadn't known before.

"Anniversary" begins,

And again, we sit down to another year,
and join hands, clumsily accepting the fact
we only have each other to love, ourselves to fear,
yet it's love that keeps us coming back.

You can read the rest of the poem at Birdfeast.

The Poetry Friday roundup for January 19th is at Robyn Hood Black's blog.

I'll be hosting right here at Chicken Spaghetti on January 26th. The Poetry Sisters' January poetry plan regarding piñatas has inspired my contribution next week.

Photo by ST: Morgan Library café, NYC, 2019.


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Oh, my goodness, that's an incredible poem. I can't remember the name of the form--it's one that I learned with Margaret's love for Jericho Brown. The repetition isn't exact but that's what holds me interest to keep going. Wonderful share this week. See you next week. Pinata? I will have to check out the challenge. I must have missed it in my traveling.

What a beautiful poem! It's one to reread and savor. Thank you for sharing it with us today.

Linda, I'm so glad you liked it, too. I can't remember the name of the form she's using either! I like that the poem works on a couple of different levels.

Elisabeth, you're so welcome. You are right about re-reading! I've done that several times and pick up something new each time.

We've been through a few tough years, and my partner and I marvel that through it all, it's love that's kept us coming back and going on through it all. In the end, that's really all we have.

Yup, love. Glad the poem spoke to you, Jane. I like many of the lines here, like this one: "Forgiveness is the beauty of being human."

There are numerous lines to love here, Susan. But "let each other in" makes me want that for everyone. Thanks for bringing this 'feast' to us!

Linda, that "let each other in" applies so much to the WORLD, doesn't it? Whew. What a year last year.

So many great lines and variations of lines in that poem! I can see why you were drawn to it. One of my favorites is "As long as we're alive, being human is the problem." Yeah. That.

And I guess I better get crackingsmackingwhacking on my pinata poem for next week!

Oh, this is a beautiful and powerful poem with so many layers. Is it a duplex? As many others noted, it's certainly a poem that rewards with rereading. We're approaching our 35th anniversary this year and it definitely resonates. That first stanza and those clumsy hands, clasping, and the ongoing love really spoke to me.

Mary Lee, yes to the piñata poem! The word "whack" did appear in mine briefly. Ha. How could it not? It's gone now, but I am still fiddling. I do like the lines in "Anniversary."

Molly, so glad you liked it! I will have to read more about the duplex. I wondered if it was a ghazal. Something to look into, for sure.

Thank you for sharing that poem. I love the home as a metaphor. The last line is what it all comes down to: With only each other to love, ourselves to fear.

Thanks for stopping by, Tracey. This poems works on several levels, and that last line does indeed sound apt.

The poem captures how clumsy and imperfect we are, yet keep at it. Thank you for sharing this poem, Susan. It's worth keeping and rereading.

You’re welcome, Janice. I have read it a number of times myself.

Such a lovely poem. Laura Salas directed us here on her post this week, as she wrote a poem with overheard conversation in it. I was also drawn to the holding hands connections in your two posts. Beautiful poem of love and falling apart.

There is an echo in the two poems. You're right, Denise! I loved Laura's, too.

I was just going to mention Laura's hand-holding poem, and see Denise made the same connection. Love the repetition in this poem, and especially: "Still, we show up to this table and try again."

A real “holding hands” Poetry Friday! Lovely.

What a beautiful poem, Susan. I love "With only each other to love, ourselves to fear" -- I may sit with this line for a bit today. I love that love overcomes fear.

Patricia, I’m so happy to hear you like it, too. This journal was new to me, and I enjoyed reading several of the poems there.

Gosh, you're ahead of the game. All I've done is pick a pinata picture. And until yesterday, I couldn't even remember what our challenge was this month. Mercy, and thanks for the anniversary poem!

Laura, ha! Since I am often scrambling, I figured I'd be prepared for Friday when I am the hostess. I'm so happy for your Charlotte Zolotow Honor news. Yay!

Thanks for sharing this powerfully strong poem, love the repeating refrains running through, and yes to the repeated forgiveness as it closes, see you next week!

I'm going to look for more work by this poet! See you next Friday, Michelle.

Thank you, Susan, for sharing such a meaningful poem at the start of a new year. Echoing the yesses to "It's love that keeps us coming back." See you on Friday!

You’re so welcome, Robyn. Thank YOU for hosting the roundup!

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