Long Poem by Tim Seibles recorded by Roger Bonair-Agard w/ cameos by Nina Jane Merrill Bonair-Agard
To be perfectly transparent, Tim Seibles is a mentor of mine. I love his work. I love the conversation of it partly because - and this is why sometimes we choose the mentors we do - i like to believe that something of that conversation appears in my own work. Seibles’ work with a long poem is particularly deft. I imagine that his ability to concentrate an intensity of purpose, language and passion in a line, a word and phrase; and then sustain it for - in this case eighteen and a half minutes; is mine. I want it to be mine so desperately, because his poems are at once so perfectly personal and political at the same damn time that you’re left marveling at the poem’s ability to achieve that AND not implode at the same time, like what you imagine might happen if you time-travelled and came into contact with yourself. All of us hoping we’re writing poems that deconstruct and explain our world(s) in a way that souls might be able to read/parse and here’s Seibles writing the soul so that the universe might parse it.
Look, you have to find the 20 minutes in your day, your night right now to listen to this poem. So many times we’re moved to wish we could get back some time we just spend watching, listening to, doing some inane thing. We get to experience so little that we’d willingly give the universe back 20minutes in gratitude for. This might be one such block of time. Listen to this poem and then go love your girl or your boy or your child or your own lonely skin harder.
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