December 8, 2013

Jen Coleman & Evan Kennedy

Sunday, December 8
7:30 pm

1001 SE Division Street 

Evan Kennedy is a poet and bicyclist who lives in San Francisco. He is the author of Terra Firmament (Krupskaya), Shoo-Ins to Ruin (Gold Wake Press), and Us Them Poems (BookThug).

Jen Coleman, a Portland, OR resident by way of Minnesota, DC and New York, co-hosts readings with the Spare Room Collective and works for Oregon Environmental Council. She recently participated in the 13 Hats collaborative of artists and writers. Psalms for Dogs and Sorcerers (Trembling Pillow Press) is her first full-length volume of poetry.

Cantico Del Sole
(after Francis of Assisi)

Francis called the fog God's creature
from fear and amity. Fire could speak
to me about how your kicks tried stamping
it out but I still wouldn't know you
from Francis or those dead to law.
I am on a bicycle lowly yet manifold
in dimness. Francis called the dirt God's
creature from tears and fealty. Beer bust
dances, the classics widely read,
our confraternity edged by death decades
ago in this town named after Francis,
from whom I don't know you but harbor
promise. Francis called the wind
God's creature from slyness and solace.
He sang through the state in the '80s,
always an active river at his back. Fish could
speak to me about how your eager bonhomie
addressed the presence of their lives, but
I still wouldn't know you from Francis,
those dead to law, or even the black bloc.
Francis called the moon God's creature
though in shock and hunger. Facing ridicule
and wonder, he sang through town
and was mugged when mistaken
for a troubadour. It's true that more poets
could speak to me about how your sounded
name soothes the sensations within
my dominion, but I still wouldn't know you
from Francis, those dead to law, the black
bloc, or any of his other resemblances.
Francis called the sun God's creature from
love, and the promise that his likenesses
would adopt this eponymous town.

Evan Kennedy

A Matter That Is Possible But Does Not
Naturally Occur in Our Environment:

Gee, is that really a mountain lion,

I say, spotting the four-faced passenger
on the Downtown 4 train

with wheels within wheels 
shrieking along a curve
under Spring street.

Is that a mountain lion? Gee!
I say it a few times.

And because language passes for truth
and order is disordered
the mountain lion
gives a long yowl.

A yowl with no audible answer.
A yowl: a model for words
at the very limit.
A yowl that demands physical integrity
even as some part of myself escapes
cohesion and falls to pieces.

Jen Coleman