Not so fast people were always telling me slow down take your time teachers
the guy who taught me to ride (“Stop cowboying,”he shouted as if that weren’t
the whole point)
But the admonition that stuck was the whisper that girl that woman that
smudged now girl-woman
hands in my hair on my back legs wound young as she was round my waist
sighed to my ear
Ah the celestial contraption we made though-no matter which way you swerved
it it held together
how not speed it up but she with her fluttery guttural Slower go slower knew better knew
No one says Not so fast anymore not Catherine when I hold her not our dog as I
putter behind her
yet everything past present future is flashing so quickly before me it feels like
Ease up on the pedal, my life, don’t you realize somewhere ahead is a cliff an
Here we are almost at the end falling off—shouldn’t by now you know better
C. K. Williams was born and grew up in and around Newark, New Jersey. He graduated from the University of Pennsylvania, where he majored in philosophy and English.
He has published many books of poetry, including Repair, which was awarded the 2000 Pulitzer Prize, The Singing which won the National Book Award for 2003, and Flesh and Blood, the winner of the National Book Critics Circle Prize in 1987.
His most recent books, Writers Writing Dying, poems, and In Time: Poems, Poets and the Rest, essays, were published in 2012. He has also been awarded the Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize, the PEN Voelker Career Achievement Award in Poetry for 1998; a Guggenheim Fellowship, two NEA grants, the Berlin Prize of the American Academy in Berlin, a Lila Wallace Fellowship, and prizes from PEN and the American Academy of Arts and Letters.
ALL ARTICLES BY C. K. WILLIAMS:
POETRY – Haste