Wild River Review

WRR 4.4 — 1 AUGUST 2007

NEW IN WILD RIVER REVIEW

NOVEL EXCERPT: In a State of Partition by Aneesha Capur

SPOTLIGHT: The Other Side Of Abu Ghraib (Part 1) — The Detainees’ Quest for Justice by Joy E. Stocke, Kim Nagy, and Chris Tiefel

COLUMN: The Mystic Pen — The Gift by Katherine Schimmel Abdel Baki

FILM REVIEW: The Prisoner, or How I Planned to Kill Tony Blair by Elizabeth Sheldon

AIRMAIL: Confessions of a Global Traveler — Hong Kong Diary: Of Courtesans and Kings by the Professor

NOVEL EXCERPT: Blood Grip Chapter 4 by Constance Garcia-Barrio

BLOG: WRR@LARGE

UP THE CREEK: Editor’s Notes — Art, Yoga, and Abu Ghraib




Weeds and Peonies

Your peonies burst out, white as snow squalls,
with red flecks at their shaggy centers
in your border of prodigies by the porch.
I carry one magnanimous blossom indoors
and float it in a glass bowl, as you used to do.

Ordinary pleasures, contentment recollected,
blow like snow into the abandoned garden,
overcoming the daisies. Your blue coat
vanishes down Pond Road into imagined snowflakes
with Gus at your side, his great tail swinging,

but you will not reappear, tired and satisfied,
and grief’s repeated particles suffuse the air —
like the dog yipping through the entire night,
or the cat stretching awake, then curling
as if to dream of her mother’s milky nipples.

A raccoon dislodged a geranium from its pot.
Flowers, roots, and dirt lay upended
in the back garden where lilies begin
their daily excursions above stone walls
in the season of old roses. I pace beside weeds

and snowy peonies, staring at Mount Kearsarge
where you climbed wearing purple hiking boots.
“Hurry back. Be careful, climbing down.”
Your peonies lean their vast heads westward
as if they might topple. Some topple.

Reprinted with permission of Houghton Mifflin


Donald Hall

Donald Hall

Donald Hall is one of our foremost men of letters, widely read and loved for his award-winning poetry, fiction, essays, and children’s literature. He has published sixteen collections of poetry and has edited numerous anthologies. His poetry has won the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, The National Book Critics Circle Award, a Lenore Marshall Award, and the Robert Frost Medal of the Poetry Society of America. He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters. He was installed as the nation’s Poet Laureate in October of 2006. Since 1975, when he resigned his university teaching position, Hall has lived in New Hampshire, on Eagle Pond Farm, an old family house, which he shared with his wife, poet Jane Kenyon. Their life together and her tragic death from leukemia have been the subjects of many of his poems.

DONALD HALL IN THIS EDITION:
PROFILE: Thinking with Muscle and Tongue — The Poetry of Donald Hall
POETRY: Great Day in the Cows House
POETRY: Kicking the Leaves
POETRY: The Man in the Dead Machine
POETRY: Mount Kearsarge Shines
POETRY: Weeds and Peonies