poetry without a place 2




More fragmentary poems, thought these are slightly less inspired. I spent the week studying Portuguese literature and my mental linguistics are entirely dissonant. I currently have a small obsession with the composer Eric Nathan and his recently released album “the space of a door”, and have been studiously perscrutating the work of Miró for the purposes of aesthetic sharpening, so that is likely to be the next poetic pairing that I’ll produce. Meanwhile, I’m determined to the writing of these paltry poems (tentatively) everyday, and placing them here from while to while. I’ve read somewhere that it is important for a creative to be so everyday, as to not lose touch with the creative sensibilities. I’m unsure if that is true, but I’m giving it a try.

Published by João-Maria

A tick clinging to the bristles of a purple boar.

62 thoughts on “poetry without a place 2

    1. Thank you so much, Gabriella. Just the other day, I was lauding your work in Lia’s comments. I’m sorry I don’t comment much (though it’s a habit that I ought to form), but I’m always reading your beautiful compositions!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You’re too sweet, Gab. I truly ought to interact more, but I’ll always write as best as I’m able. Hopefully, I can inspire other creators, as that would mean the world to me.

        Liked by 1 person

  1. You keep introducing me to new things – in this case Eric Nathan. Of the extracts I heard I like “Eisenbahnschinbewegung ” the best. But I’m not overly enamored.

    There are fragments of your fragments that speak to me.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You aren’t even listening to the best part, Bruce, which is clearly “herbstlaubtrittvergnügen”. I’m jesting, I realise the BMO is very much an acquired taste, and far from me to assume everyone would like contemporary classical. My musical education was very veered towards Pärt, Ornstein, Glass, Schoenberg, etc.

      I’m glad some of them speak to you, but I shall make it my mission that all of them do. Wasn’t it Eliot that said “unless you like my entire work, you should die in radical, ardent indigence!”, well, I echo his feelings.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I was brought up on Glass, Schoenberg, Webern, Berg, Stockhausen, Boulez, Berio, Ligetti, Lilburn… I haven’t heard a complete work by Eric Nathan so everything is out of context but his use of the strings is sort of Penderecki with a tune!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I’m going through this phase where all I can hear to hear is either hard electronic ambient or things like Kati Agócs, John Cage, David Lang, Eric Nathan and Julia Wolfe.
        Oh, and of course, Joep Beving and his piano, when I want to feel human.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Good taste – although I don’t know all of them,
        When I said earlier that “There are fragments of your fragments that speak to me.” I was speaking of your poems here, and not of Eric Nathan!

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Oh, Bruce, I understood what you meant, hence the Eliot quote, haha.
        (The Debrecen Passion is quite something; I’ve always been enaumoured with Thou Art a Vineyard)

        Liked by 1 person

      5. I shall seek it out – but at present I have only an old pair of computer headphones that are blind on the left side – so I can’t listen to much these days – and no speaker! My current passion/obsession is Barbara Strozzi – a contemporary of JS Bach – and I bawl my eyes out even though I don’t understand Italian.

        Liked by 1 person

      6. It’s so interesting that Barbara is from the Baroque when, listening to her, it seems like the perfect sound for Medieval noble chamber music.
        She was rather great, I only wish I could have heard her sing.

        Liked by 1 person

      7. Yes – I think you’ve hit the nail on the head! She’s definitely a troubadour singer but with class. I did my thesis in 16th century English lute music which is
        a) Why I’ve never had a proper job, and
        b) my music taste is all over the place.

        Liked by 1 person

      8. My music taste is all over the place because I’m veritably loopy, which is why I must admit that an entire thesis on 16th century lute music sounds brilliant, yes please.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Bob! That means a lot. You understand better than I, since you’re committed to posting every day. I don’t think I could quite cope with that self-pressure, especially since my brain is made of air.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I found the arrangement of the fragments to be quite pleasant, uplifting and sort of teasing; even though some of the imagery can be perceived as unsettling, and I really enjoyed reading it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh, thank you, Oloriel. I did not plan their order, they were just written as-is.
      Regarding the imagery, I apologise! I believe you are talking about 59., and the imagery of the second part truly is a bit violent; the sentiment I tried to accite was that, even despite the violence of the deaths in the natural world, we perceive those deaths as non-cruel, which is a sentiment rarely present on human deaths. We have to far abstracted the act of dying to the point where it more performance than — as is with the rest of the natural world — a natural conclusion to being.
      Unfortunately, these fragments aren’t too involved, thus these more elaborate aspects don’t translate so clearly. Thank you for reading and leave such a warm comment.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. No worries about elaborating, although I do appreciate it; it makes the fragments and their arrangement perhaps as an accidental bigger poem, seem all that better, for I get to read it as you would, not just as I would (this apropo seeing people constantly complain how a poem is not good if you have to explain it)

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Oh, I don’t mind explaining it, as I never thought of it as good to begin with, and I say this merely because I find it nigh impossible to conjugate all the things one ought to do or not do in creative endeavours. In fact, we wouldn’t be speaking if I heeded such wisdoms, since I’ve always been told not to write creatively outside my language, since it would never appear genuine.
        People say much, and they mean much, but we are, after all, just people.

        Liked by 2 people

  3. I’ve been trying to read Paterson by WC Williams and got so angry with it I put it aside. Prefer this, which says something about me and something about you I suppose! There, to that. Lovely sharing, and yes be creative every day if you can. What a bouquet you’ve gathered for us here. Thank you…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hahaha!, Paterson!, oh, the memories. Carlos is terribly indulgent, which, in his case, is his demise. Stevens, for example, is a lot more indulgent with much richer results. I didn’t get past Book II of Paterson, nor do I believe I’ve lost much in giving up at that stage.
      I must thank you, Bill, it’s an honour to be read by someone as subtle as you.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I just stopped at Book II myself. There’s a great film called Paterson with a Adam Driver playing a would-be poet/bus driver, which led me to that by way of another writer friend who recommended the film. I got so angry with it because I felt it made me dumb somehow, possibly above me academically. That’s not my taste in writing, needing to be led like that, needed explained-to. Cheers and looking forward to getting to know you more in the days to come, I need some good new material and inspiration. No pressure! Ha!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. But there are differing geometries at play, I find. When I first read Eliot, and especially his Four Quartets or Wasteland, I did have some referential issues; Maria Rilke was also complicated and Yeats, even more so than the other two put together. But, in all of these, I found some emotional dimension that made the work worthwhile, something that didn’t seem conjured for the mere purpose of performative intellectualism, or the purpose of embossing one’s own neurolinguistic oddness.
        Carlos never inspired that the work he demanded was aureated by a man with poetry within him; he just inspires to have mastered verse, and verse is the form, not the substance, I find.
        But I’m not very smart. And if I can inspire you, the better, and if not, I can say that I tried, haha!

        Liked by 1 person

      3. The emotional dimension as you put it is precisely what I’m after, irrespective of the references. I needed Ulysses explained to me but I can “get” Portrait, the Irish references notwithstanding, and it still rings a universal bell for me that’s both self-consumed as you say, but also truly interactive. So that’s all I’ve got on the topic for tonight. I’m going to reheat chili, boil rice and contemplate the poetry in that. Without much need to contemplate.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, Trent. I’m a little baby compared to some around here, but I’m very glad that you consider me of any talent (even if it was just a little, haha). Especially coming from someone as talented as yourself.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I know, I’m so sorry! I don’t always get a chance to check everyone in a timely fashion. I hope you haven’t been unilaterally following me for long, and I’m truly regretful that I didn’t follow you sooner, you seem like such a talented creator.
        I will prescrutate your poems further later in the evening!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. You remarks completely resonate with own sentiments! I often feel bad at not commenting or getting back to people as quickly as others seem to. And the same goes for regretting not following others sooner, as well. We are all so busy. And then there’s the matter of the time zones…Still at least you and I are now connected! And we can only do what we can do. 😊

        Liked by 1 person

  4. What a brilliant, evocative beauty of a poem. How you utilize language is beyond amazing, and often, it is inclined to strong emotions of memory and change. At least that is how I’ve interpreted this piece starting from 58.

    I could be very well wrong about my interpretations, but this piece beckons itself to me and I would love to attempt to analyze it.

    59 seems to encompass aspects of growth in relation to human nature. Particularly how plants grow and how that compares to humans. In this way, you compare how reaction cannot just be how it is—there are other reasons for the way things are, or how they respond to a source. This has an affinity to human behavior. We react, but we’re not made “purely by reaction.” There is more to the composition that we compose ourselves as of humanity and human relationships.

    By this reaction or perhaps a reaction that comes naturally, there is contrast between man and nature. It is evolution and change. The soil is no longer embarrassed (figuratively) as it evolved and starting poking into “the feet of men…”

    Continuing with this theme, there are aspects of help and hurt. The soil hurt man. The rain once spread to help man perhaps (a natural occurrence of nature), but was ripped apart by the wind when it drapes the soul in those proper conclusions. This can be about the judgement of man; we help and hurt especially as times change, then so do our reactions evolve.


    This is my favorite excerpt. There is a musicality to it in its honesty and reflection. Quite like a mirror, when we find others that can understand us, there is a piece of us that goes with them, and a piece of them in us. We are made of the people we call friends, who we call or choose as family and home. They constitute us as we do them.


    A beauty in the death of things. This seems to be evinced by “another beautiful order of depletion” line. Is this, perhaps, a symbiosis of nature and man? We are different but we can be the same. We imitate and create. It’s like breeding—it can be in our control, the impact as we have in nature. This can be compared to the impact we leave to others. We make our choices and there is always a choice.

    But creating things that aren’t your own… This could delineate different definitions. I think of this as a form of what is called the highest flattery—imitation. We model, we form, and we create. What we imitate has a basis of respect to the thing we sought after for.


    We come full circle to a theme of life and death. “Your time is spent. Your imminent breath…”

    Time is up, so it seems, and now all we have is time to count left or what is left. Therefore, there is only time for reflection, change and evolution. If we cannot change, it is like being blind. It is being stuck in a position that you cannot see out of until you let yourself. When we reflect, we look back at those fragments in memories and learn from them (or at the very least, try to).

    Overall, JM, you’ve blown me away once again leaving me inspired, awestruck and filled with wonder at your poetry. This might be my favorite poem of yours yet.

    I wish I could say more to express how amazed I am at your work, but I think the dictionary does me a disservice in doing so. There is nothing that I can describe clearly that can capture that feeling when I read your work.

    Let me say that your writing is out of this world. Perhaps even this universe or galaxy.

    Stunning with intricate and delicate beauty entwined in each word and each sentence. I enjoyed reading this very much!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Oh Lucy, thank you so much, you are the kindest. And wow, what a plunge into my paltry writings. I wonder if it was worth the while, as I’m not all that subtle with my writings. Though, and since I find Art to be wholly dialectic, I will write which parts of your interpretation match the sentiments that informed my poems and which don’t, albeit entirely privy that they needn’t match at all!

    (Regarding 59) – Geotropism, or gravitropism, is the way in which gravity impacts or determines the growth of plants, and heliotropism is the way in which plants grow congruently to the direction of sunlight, as is, for example, sunflowers, though all diurnal flowers are more-or-less heliotropical, (a heliotrope is also my favourite mineral!). Now, this is not a dichotomy per say, since most flowers conjugate both these growth determinants, but I like to envision it as some sort of inner/outer dynamic, the geotropical immanent “I” and the heliotropical oneiric “I”; to be and to dream, to be determined by being and determined by dreaming concomitantly, is, at least in a human aspect, a “manufactured equilibrium”, since we live outside of naturalness, at least in our conceptions, and thus the second part is sort of growth from the first, not so much a fluid continuation. We’re found, I find, in a situation where the cruelty of death is of especially weight, because it is often especially unnatural; often completely ignored by the natural world, or, as we’ve seen with the pandemic, this world benefits from our absence, such is the degree of our poor adaptation to it. It’s nice to imagine a world (“warm to believe) that is concerned enough to even warrant the cruelty it displays towards other lifeforms. Autumn is the season of death, and that’s the symbology there. I find Winter to be the season of dormancy and quiescence, instead.

    60. This poem is a complete mess, as are all the poems I tend to write from instances of being with someone else. I went to visit a mountain last week with a friend that I haven’t seen in a while, and we actually thought of one-another out of nowhere and simultaneously, which is the entire depth of the first part, haha. Goes to show how much one may feel out of such simple things. Later on in the day, we were finding shapes in those large granitic rocks of central Portugal, and most of them have those black stains of dead leprose lichen, and one looked like the skyline of a city. I started naming streets (toponymy) of said city, and my friend interrupted me and said “we’ll put a church there”; hence the “worship different voids”. My friends don’t know I write, or most of them don’t, and I’ve been very timid about it my entire life. These small instances feel, as they should feel, like some sort of creativity that I needn’t hide. It seems simple, but as you and I both know well, there’s nothing simple about what we feel when we create, even when it’s simply the name of an imaginary street in a fictive city for fungi-people in an ancient rock.

    That last one, 60.3., you are actually quite on the bullseye with that one, but none of my artifice, you quite literally generated the correct meaning for that poem, as I see it. It’s more than being as-good-as-dead without self-change, but also allowing that change to be destructive, to feel destructive, when it ought to, because it passes. It all passes. It’s important to change while privy of the transient nature of change, and it’s important not to desist whenever we can’t feel ourselves change. Not all nights that plunge through us are, as one might say, entirely perceptible to us, but they do leave residue.

    Don’t worry about the dictionary, I don’t either! I’m really happy that my poems mean something to you, since I often struggle with wondering if they mean anything to me, haha. And you’re a marvelous creator yourself, Lucy, perhaps out of this dimension! I’m happy we get to support each-other, and that is more important to me than writing well of writing better. The dialogue means a whole lot.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. There is a dream-like feeling to these fragments. I feel like the narrator is wandering somewhere, recording observations of his surroundings for a beloved companion or lover. Though it also has the feel of a piece of an ancient epic poem.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m the poetic subject in this instance, and I’ve been wandering about quite a bit as of late, I find. It’s very sweet that you find me oneiric, or at least, I find it very sweet, as I always love to be associated with dreams.
      Thank you so much for reading me. I know my poems are not quite at your level, but it warms my heart that you’d give them a chance.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. It has been an unanticipated opportunity to land up at your page and explore it…
    The fragmented poems are always my favourite, though I have never succeeded in writing and contended myself in reading mostly….the form is very popular in Bengali language in India
    I love them for it takes us through a long strimg of imageries with Joyecean leaps…the thoughts differ in expressions yet are interconnected through roots and soil…
    I am still in the dreamwalk through your poem, rather poems, and the words dance in a ballet of thoughts within alleyways of my heart…truly a precious evening to spend reading you
    my regards from India

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, Saibal! That means a whole darn lot. I, too, like fragmented poetry. There is one creator in this platform whose fragmented poetry is among the richest, he’s named huzaifazoom. I urge you to search for him.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. The one thing that makes us a writer, of poetry, prose, or analysis, is that we write. You definitely do that, in many different forms, and your writing provokes deep thought and encourages pouring effort into research.

    I have not the same deep and meaningful response as some who have commented here, but I do very much enjoy your writings. So, thank you for writing, I look forward to reading more. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Hamish! I’m a bit of a bumpy ride concerning quality and theme, but there is always something to be learnt from a poem of mine. I make sure the experience is worth some of the while!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: