the new poets : part 2

Sheila E. Murphy's work has been published widely in books and magazines. A book-length collection entitled A SOUND THE MOBILE MAKES IN WIND: 50 AMERICAN HAIBUN has just been released from Mudlark, and is viewable at Her FALLING IN LOVE FALLING IN LOVE WITH YOU SYNTAX: SELECTED AND NEW POEMS appeared from Potes & Poets Press in 1997. Sun & Moon Press will bring out LETTERS TO UNFINISHED J. as the winner of its 1996 Open Poetry Competition judged by Los Angeles poet Dennis Phillips. Murphy has been writing poetry and submitting work for publication since 1978. Her first appearance in print was in SALT LICK magazine, edited by James Haining.

Of the work appearing in ViewZone, Murphy writes:

"One satisfying way to approach this work is to read the words aloud, and to try to hear them as music, while paying little to no attention to the suspected meanings. After accepting the sequence of sounds, listen again, this time allowing the play between meanings as we know them and the sounds as sounds. The effect should be one of dance, a cross between discovery and play.

"An important thing to recognize about these poems and many other works found in contemporary writing is that literary efforts are NOT puzzles to be solved. There is not (at least in my work) some 'hidden meaning' that we are supposed to 'get.' Rather, there is a process, an event, perhaps even a complete refashioning of what is here. It is entirely possible that the reader, by adding in his or her perspectives, will help forward the work to a new plane.

"The work that I create is there to be enjoyed, not to make potential readers feel inadequate or simply perplexed. It exists to open possibilities, and to inspire the mind to work in a new way. Perhaps even to inspire the heart to process more fully as well.

"Many of us have been programmed to assign the status of guru to a writer. Accordingly, 'the audience' has inherited the role of passive recipients of whatever the writer might provide. This model is limited and limiting. I take a different view. In writing for the best reader who will be available to me, I seek to engender further thought, further feeling, rather than simply expressing my own. The process becomes more than reciprocal. It involves and upward spiralling, therefore a refinement.

"That said, my work certainly includes lyrical passages. But the intention of the work, what it is trying to do, is much broader and deeper than that. The challenge I have given myself and the one that I wholeheartedly accept includes taking sounds and words and syllables and spaces and making them into something that creates a vibration state that is heuristic. I want to inspire myself and others to perceive differently, to create a different state of mind. This means that simply painting a picture or telling a story can be PART OF what is done, but that doing those things only would never be enough."

untitled poem #1

my globe my pinpoint generous my most
insistent gravity
my hotplate kindling all the needed
path to port my taken
julienne of light my anything of substance patterning
a world the needed solely
stillness my inheritance
of quiet lingering moan faltering
my demitasse my quiet cup
my sentence urgently replete with
centered flight

untitled poem #2

table a quintessence also a
shaped maple housing
tract the followed
(tentative) un-
mentioned reverence as interruptive point of speech to
listingly address
globality a semiautomatic
inference to blue the
shale tool
risen from
a place in turn so cool
to jure page
limber walls of slow-go
acronyms to make us feel
whole pondering

untitled poem #3

autumn thought through spring
rewritten surface paths
entwined perhaps conversant
with/in forenoon severalities
the leaves play bandages upon
no legacy to fall beside
the open keel tones
verbiage to swan the meter
with a measure trounced to
post results selected
faultline of adobe wince
the ride is long slow
later trail to alter feathering
a practice artfully third distance from
eloquent thin room recorded on
cheap hybrid (aren't these biceps
fruitful (clans by the small
juice castor oil their way
to brown and canteen thread
to poll weather as perhaps
the sorted inkling game plans
long and fortified the sweet
sentenced results to mean
fiesta people who sit
at or near big city boulevards
restrict to have afforded
(proof of that) circuitous
amendments hastened to appear

untitled poem #4

dance of a building
levitable champion-prone
divvies pronged
white paint situation
calm wide wheat or not
teach me to laureate
the fertile weeds or change
my mantra, bleat my
mane, enforce the swank
night stitches glom onto
life learned in dramatic
seizure trust my judge
instinctively parlance waits
without adverbs
plans an action, sentence
the recipients to feeling
ask them to prequire
alleviance and if not
why so see if you can
possibly extinguish some of
the unique scan tension
fry the dosage back into
unkempt arrivals slow going
hammer camps so isolation
generally singes (sings)
elitely as opposed to
what is written
on your name tag (teams of two)

untitled poem #5

eavesdropping on mutual
adoration socks away
what is behind
the cover
of toned sentiment
accept in trade
the genuine concealment
traffic in diminutives
maintain the office
holdings parse them
well with cruciasl
sand that might be
glasses on another face
run into roadblocks
tantrums lanky weedlings
don't forget rate of return
pride of spellcheck
sub par defeats
the purpose of it anyway
from the tribal perspective
indigence apart from
locked attentive guru making
featherwood and thus
so hostily soprano
costed out into
the teal and featured
roses stung by (in pints)

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