Friday, January 9, 2009


Rub me like I am the
string and you are the bow
and then maybe I’ll make
a sound, some kind of
holy unbecoming,
instead of this long
flat drone of mouth
sewn wide and
atomic words that won’t
grip the teeth
but implode by my

If desire is song,
numb is stacked silence,
so I'll pick them apart
with lead-lined gloves
and pluck myself


(The video is Zoe Keating's "Tetrishead")


David Cranmer said...

Well done... I like "holy unbecoming."

Catvibe said...

Atomic Words, Lead lined gloves...that place between desire and numb that is radioactive with energy and fire, I know that place. A tough place to see and not be able to speak for fear of the wrath it might cause. Well plucked, this poem, Sarah dear. May the plucking of that radioactive place be played so well as this wonderful poem. And may your atomic words find their release outside of you without rendering you and yours a nuclear wasteland.

Sarah Hina said...

David, thanks. :) This was a quickie.

Cat, I hear what you're saying, and I like your interpretation. However, my main point in writing this poem was to turn the responsibility for being moved--beyond those barriers and silences we retreat behind--from something outer to inner.

Also, I have a difficult time verbalizing myself. And imagining judgment when I do. So that's why those words can feel "atomic." It's easier just to be quiet, and want to relinquish control, but much more toxic in the long run.

Thank you, Cat! :)

Catvibe said...

Me too. That's why writing has such a strong hold on me. I can get it out before it kills me! And amazing the catharsis when it is out and safely on the page. It's almost like all that pain described is gone, embedded into that poem or whatever, but no longer dangerous or contagious. I think I was about your age when I figured that out. I'm not a good verbalizer, I ramble and feel inhibited and like I can't hold anyone's attention, completely self conscious, secretly screaming out for a pen! (Ok a keyboard, but you get the point.) ;-) Never stop writing, people like you and me will always require it for our happiness and mental health.

sawan said...

what a way to let out your thoughts. luvd your space!

Charles Gramlich said...

I like this a lot. LIke my favorite poems, it has many undercurrents. Multiple meanings.

Anonymous said...

An important act--to pick away numbness and too much desire, to pluck a happy and defiant song. But then again, bows can make the most layered and mesmerizing music.

Perhaps the most powerful songs have a good measure of each.

Oh, and don't forget the rosin. ;)

Sarah Hina said...

Cat, absolutely. I'm grateful you can empathize with this feeling. I am sick of feeling socially mangled all the time, of throwing blocks up. I'd like to raze them, and yet acute awareness of self-consciousness adds even more weight. Knowing you have a problem can make it worse in this instance. I guess the trick is to surround ourselves with people around whom we can honestly let our guard down. And work from there. I haven't quite figured it out yet. ;)

It is a lot easier to flood the page, though. And thank goodness for that release. :) Thanks so much, Cat, for the warm encouragement! I know just what you mean.

Sawan, thank you for looking around! And please come back. :)

Charles, I'm glad you discovered those layers. And I completely agree. Those are my favorite kinds of poems and art, too. Thanks, my friend.

Jason, I agree. There's no doubt.

It's not so much defiance as a kind of acceptance. Lean too hard, and there's always a fall. Give up, and live a pretty muted existence.

On a side note, I feel my cello interest piquing again. :) Must get out the Yo-Yo and Dupre once more...

JR's Thumbprints said...

I can hear the attitude in this piece. It really goes with the music.

the walking man said...

Absolutely a fine use of words and video to present the texture and layers. Quick or not in the writing the sensual qualities are powerfully given.

Aine said...

We all need moments of self-reflection to sort through the emotions and barriers that prevent us from living fully. And yes, it is a solo event.

I love the image of "pluck myself anew".

K.Lawson Gilbert said...

Sarah, I really love what you have done here. Your fresh language - atomic words, holy unbecoming, stacked silence, pluck myself anew - ...meld into a seamless impression of a self-proposal. Isn't that what we all want at one time or another - to re-invent ourselves - to shout our yawps!

Sarah Hina said...

JR, I'm glad you felt like it was satisfying marriage. That cello piece got to me.

Walking Man, those layers and the mood evoked are so important. Thank you for receiving them so well.

Aine, self reflection is critical. As long as it doesn't hold us back from living (saw a movie last night that dealt with this...tell you later ;)).

K, a self-proposal...I love that!

I'm glad the language worked for you here. I was shooting for something fresh, and less labored. You're right, as usual. :)

And it's funny you mention the "yawp"--that favorite Whitman phrase used to be part of my blog sub-heading! Great minds...


RachelW said...

I love this poem.

Sarah Hina said...

Rachel, thank you for coming over from Nancy's. I'm so glad this piece touched you. :)