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Lucie Brock-Broido gave a really great interview with the Poetry Foundation regarding this particular poem (poem below), as well as on her structural style at a larger scale.  I wanted to include or post this poem, mostly because I think it’s a really great exploration of how a seemingly non-related topic can becoming the platform for grief and sorrow in a way the reader may not originally anticipate. But also due to the fact that Brock did provide an interview on the construction of the poem itself, which is just a great resource in general! Link to that article here.

What is attempted in this poem is something that I try to do in my own work, although admittedly unsuccessful at times, which is to use the white space and unspoken as the real content of the poem, not necessarily what is easily discernible upon the first reading.  I think poetry, while often blunt, has the luxury of asking the reader to work for meaning.  Often times in formal narrations the reader wants the sort of detail and exploration that poetry cannot always give due to space.  In many ways poetry simply encompasses an idea, not the entire story.  Which, brings me back to why I like this poem: Brock plays upon this assumed relationship in a way that I think is very successful.  In moving forward with my own work, I like to look to look at poetry such as this to better help me formulate how I can improve my own writing.

Extreme Wisteria 

By Lucie Brock-Broido

On abandon, uncalled for but called forth.
                                                                              The hydrangea
Of   her crushed each year a little more into the attar of   herself.
Pallid. Injured, wildly capable.
A throat to come home to, tupelo.
                                                Lemurs in parlors, inconsolable.
Parlors of burgundy and sleigh. Unseverable fear.
Wistful, woke most every afternoon
                                In the green rooms of the Abandonarium.
                                                Beautiful cage, asylum in.
Reckless urges to climb celestial trellises that may or may not
                                 Have been there.
So few wild raspberries, they were countable,
                                 Triaged out by hand.
Ten-thousand-count Egyptian cotton sheets. Intimacy with others,
                                 Sateen. Extreme hyacinth as evidence.
Her single subject the idea that every single thing she loves
                                 Will (perhaps tomorrow) die.
High editorial illusion of   “Control.” Early childhood: measles,
                                                                              Scarlet fevers;
Cleopatra for most masquerades, gold sandals, broken home.
Convinced Gould’s late last recording of the Goldberg Variations
Was put down just for her. Unusual coalition of early deaths.
Early middle deaths as well. Believed, despite all evidence,
In afterlife, looked hopelessly for corroborating evidence of   such.
                                                                                          Wisteria, extreme.
There was always the murmur, you remember, about going home.

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