Barbara Cully

Barbara Cully

Barbara Cully is the author of two poetry collections from Penguin Books: Desire Reclining (2003) and The New Intimacy (1997), which won the National Poetry Series Award; and two collections from Kore Press: Shoreline Series (1997) and That Place Where (2011). A new collection, Under the Hours, is forthcoming from JackLeg Press in May 2012, and Cully Selected Poems is forthcoming in May 2013. She has taught in the Department of English at the University of Arizona for 26 years. She is co-editor of two writing textbooks (Pearson, 1996-2012): Writing as Revision (in its 5th ed.), and Entry Points. She has received fellowships from the Arizona Commission on the Arts and the Kayroli Foundation in Vence, France and has been Writer-in-Residence for the YMCA Writer’s Voice. In addition, she teaches writing in the Prague Summer Program at Charles University in the Czech Republic and online for Kaplan University. But mostly she is an amateur photographer and nature lover.

 

The horizon in its pausing

 

Because it pausing and the broken wave.

           *

Because cliff edge as wing spot and talon point.

           *

Because mothers hunched and weary looking

            plod along the edge like pioneers—

            *

 

Because the many-mouthed god drifting by day

            belly up in the tide foam.

            *

Because the day as undulating man-o'-war distressed in the surf

            nearing the strand distended.

            *

Because the void-black star on the water.

            *

Because the minus-tide collapsing sideways

            swallows as it receives us

            (flap, flap—)

            *

Because beneath the squall, net-free, the luminous hosts went happy.

            *

Because our wrested songs, harmonies,

            that do not feed

            instruct the day.

            *

Because go all alone your hours so.

            *

Because the day as measured opens does.

            *

Because this owl as tip of night,

            no flight nor shadow sown.

            *

Because it dire the crowd that wears your face,

            your shade—

            *

Because that god, your pale host—

            the living dead—

            has left or lost your tender body: no,

            a fine film,

            screen of the world, a pale gold glimmering.

            *

Because mystery as the core of power shot.

            Through which I will leave myself a gate.

            *

Because all plans are lizard step and spidering.

            Through which, as dancers, enter all.

            (Intoned as song.)

            *

Oh, now as near the shore edge canyon break,

            *

this will of hours joins the fevers and the broken bones

            (knitted so).

            *

Later as …

 

            *

Because we waltzed

            because beneath

            motionless sky.

 

 

From That Place Where, Kore Press, 2011.

Arizona Board of Regents