About Me

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Mark Olival-Bartley studied applied linguistics at Hawaii Pacific University, attaining B.A. and M.A. degrees in Teaching English as a Second Language, and poetry at the City College of New York. He is now writing a dissertation on the sonnets of E. A. Robinson at LMU, where he tutors composition alongside editing flyers on poetry and style. His poems and translations have appeared in journals on both sides of the Atlantic. He is the resident poet at EcoHealth, where his science-themed verse is regularly featured, and a senior copyeditor at Review of International American Studies. He also teaches at Münchner Volkshochschule and leads the Amerikahaus Literaturkreis.

20151211

More Sonnets at Christmas

by Allen Tate

To Denis Devlin

I

Again the native hour lets down the locks   
Uncombed and black, but gray the bobbing beard;   
Ten years ago His eyes, fierce shuttlecocks,   
Pierced the close net of what I failed: I feared   
The belly-cold, the grave-clout, that betrayed   
Me dithering in the drift of cordial seas;
Ten years are time enough to be dismayed
By mummy Christ, head crammed between his knees.   

Suppose I take an arrogant bomber, stroke   
By stroke, up to the frazzled sun to hear   
Sun-ghostlings whisper: Yes, the capital yoke—
Remove it and there’s not a ghost to fear   
This crucial day, whose decapitate joke   
Languidly winds into the inner ear.

Note:  A recitation can be heard here.

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