Monday, 6 December 2010

raymond carver

What The Doctor Said

He said it doesn't look good
he said it looks bad in fact real bad
he said I counted thirty-two of them on one lung before
I quit counting them
I said I'm glad I wouldn't want to know
about any more being there than that
he said are you a religious man do you kneel down
in forest groves and let yourself ask for help
when you come to a waterfall
mist blowing against your face and arms
do you stop and ask for understanding at those moments
I said not yet but I intend to start today
he said I'm real sorry he said
I wish I had some other kind of news to give you
I said Amen and he said something else
I didn't catch and not knowing what else to do
and not wanting him to have to repeat it
and me to have to fully digest it
I just looked at him
for a minute and he looked back it was then
I jumped up and shook hands with this man who'd just given me
something no one else on earth had ever given me
I may have even thanked him habit being so strong


Kat Mortensen said...

Swiss, I don't recall having read your poetry before. I will remedy that.

I hadn't heard of Carver (so I did some digging). I see this emulates his style - if the inscription on his grave is anything to go by. I'll be 50 next year. His early death gives one pause.


P.S. Have seen the info on the Swedish Wallander on the Imdb and a dedicated website. If we can get hold of it, we will definitely watch it, being big fans of Scandinavian film.
I'm reading a Kjell Eriksson at them moment. Do you know of him?

swiss said...

oh this isn't me! that's on the other blog. this is definitely carver. but yes you should look out for him. aside from the short stories his collected poems - all of us - is totally worth a look.

i know of kjell eriksson but haven't read any. will keep an eye out.

swiss said...

and while i remember, if you can't get a hold of wallander see if you can check out masjävlar (confusingly - dalecarlians in english). easily my favourite swedish film this year.

Titus said...

Oh, that's good.

swiss said...

in which case i shall re-recommend carver's cllected poems - all of us.

which you can now get in this country with the lovely harvill logo stuck right on it for a mere twelve quid. possibly my favourite poetry collection after my collected maragaret atwood. really.