Friday, August 6, 2010

Not Quiet But Spare

A Shorter Distance

(in the midst of the "Quietude" debate)

Not quiet, no, but spare:
there--pithy, tough,
not much more than enough,
as if spoken while working,
or during love, or in hiding.

Utterance reduced--not
primitive or shy, just
taciturn, in that one
kind of American grain.
--Dickinson, whom the Beat
Boys ignored or belittled.
Not Walt, the loud guy
in a bar, and bless his
bearded heart for that.
We needed that as well.

--Thought through, pondered
on, then let go, not heavy
on the rhetorical gravy. That's
how some people talk and
some write. It's a quantity
of language showing up after
thought. Not shy, not quiet.
Just brief, one of those
short jabs no one sees
because they're watching
the guy fall down. A
straighter distance.

Copyright 2010 Hans Ostrom
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