Barbara Blatner

The Still Position

FACT IS

I stare
out your kitchen window
at green-black
mountain swelling
above back yard
fields and orchards.

near the summit’s
stony escarpment
before the vertical scar
cut through trees
for telephone wire,
a hawk
is flying.

and I’m thinking:
it doesn’t matter
that you neglected us
got drunk at us
charmed us
against each other.
we love you terribly
the eye of love’s
ever sharper
now that you lie
in bed in your room
at the end of the hall
dying.

we’re bound to you
like that hawk
to her hunger,
we hunt
your love
we circle
we shadow

Reviews:


"Is this what poetry can do—stand at the intersection of time and eternity? Here, at The Still Position, is where we find the poet Barbara Blatner -- singing. These poems are a sorrow and a sweetness--together they make a symphony anyone who is mortal will be touched by."
--Marie Howe, Author of What the Living Do and The Kingdom of Ordinary Time

"These are straight-forward and arresting poems, both bold and alluring. I admire them a great deal both for what they dare to attempt and for what they succeed in accomplishing."
--Jane Smiley, Winner of the Pulitzer Prize

"Not since Mark Doty's work about his lover Wally's death has there been another poem cycle that examines the stages of dying with such fierce love."
--Louise DeSalvo, Author of Writing as a Way of Healing

Selected Works

Drama
Years of Sky tells of the doomed but enduring love between David, black, and Stace, white, whose relationship is bound to both Kennedy assassinations and thirty years of American politics.
Poetry
Living with You traces in lyrical, abstract verse, reminiscent of George Oppen and other poets in that tradition, the first years of the poet's married life. Barbara Blatner's work possesses great power and great stillness. It is quiet but passionate, and the sense I have is that the processes she describes go on forever: "so we come back to / the old / the new // like the cats / in circle of[…]" She is very much a necessary poet in these loud and selfish times. —Mac Wellman New York Quarterly Books, 2012
A poetry chapbook
Poetry, memoir
A verse memoir of my mother's death
Verse play
A verse play for Epiphany

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