anselm’s webern poem

This morning, thinking of old friend Anselm Hollo now in hospice, I read into MAYA, that gorgeous 1970 Cape Golliard book of his, gathering poems from 1959 to 1969. Here is the one that spoke to me most right now:

w e b e r n

1

switch off the light
the trees stand together

easier then
to be in our bodies

growing quietly
‘dem tode entgegen’

slow it is
a slow business

to grow a few words
to say love

2

“who will have mercy upon us
if we
     have none”

merci  is thanks
say thanks
for the small mercies

such as the breath
and the hand
      still moving

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3 opinions on “anselm’s webern poem”

  1. It’s powerful stuff – I wish I were have effective with such minimal speech. He makes the slow business, the small mercies, seem so much more graceful than felt at times.

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