Tag Archives: Al Filreis

Turbans in Connecticut (and New York)

Sikh Parade P4273472_edited-1The great structure has become a minor house.
No turban walks across the lessened floors.

—Wallace Stevens (The Plain Sense of Things)

Turbans, along with sombreros, appear early on in the poems of Wallace Stevens. At least three poems in Harmonium sport turbans. Here’s The Load of Sugar-Cane:

The going of the glade-boat
Is like water flowing;

Like water flowing
Through the green saw-grass
Under the rainbows;

Under the rainbows
That are like birds,
Turning, bedizened,

While the wind still whistles
As kildeer do,

When they rise
At the red turban
Of the boatman. Continue reading

Just Walking Around

John Ashbery at Kelly Writers House 2-11-13

John Ashbery at Kelly Writers House 2-11-13 (photograph by Al Filreis)

. . . as you realized once again

That the longest way is the most efficient way,
The one that looped among islands, and
You always seemed to be traveling in a circle.

—John Ashbery
[Just Walking Around]

I was lost. It’s not uncommon. It looked like Locust Walk, but though I walked on and on, the place I was looking for was nowhere to be seen. I approached a student, a really nice guy. An MBA candidate, well qualified to set me straight. “You’re walking parallel to it. I’m going your way, so come with me.” Continue reading