Thursday, June 28, 2007

Poetry Around Us

Gate 15, Burlington International Airport, Burlington, VT: birch-weaved panels inscribed with the poetry of Cora Brooks.
Attracted to Her axis
the same earth
that would fling us
would swerve to curve under us
to gather us around.
Two women, a chair apart, sit with their backs to the poetry. One in a pink top, visor and clogs, reads a wilted People magazine, passing time with the past. Her neighbor is reading the last pages of a stiff paperback. Impatient for denouement, she skips the meat and goes for the dessert.

A local article tells us that in addition to Brooks' short poems, the walls also contain journal excerpts from a 19th century Vermont woman named Harriet Warren Vail. Vail's diary is seasonal, simple notes for each month, marking changes and daily activity: chopping, storing, witnessing.

Further down, a young couple with backpacks stands to read. A pair of women take notice, swish in their seats, move their head and necks to read out loud, completing words for each other.

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