Wednesday, November 30, 2005

A Poem, and An Aside

A poem to think about, that I didn't really understand, but its deep, it moved me when I read it. Ideas welcomed,

Love Song

I have loved you during the powwow
And I have loved you during the rodeo.
I have loved you from jail
And I have loved you from Browning, Montana.
I have loved you like a drum and drummer
And I have loved you like a holy man.
I have loved you with my tongue
And I have loved you with my hands.

But I haven't loved you like a scream.
And I haven't loved you like a moan.
And I haven't loved you like a laugh.
And I haven't loved you like a sigh.
And I haven't loved you like a cough.
And I haven't loved you well enough.

--Sherman Alexie


The Aside:

Washington people get lumped with Idaho, bumped with Oregon, stashed with Montana at times in a weird mix, and claim to be nothing but origional. I try to tell people what Washintonians are like, how from Seattle to Spokane, you are free to be what you want. It was one of the later states into the union and I think we keep that wild west, pioneering, free-thinking, not-bogged-down by too much history and tradition feel. It is as common to see someone in farmer gear, as gothic wear (even though it is out of date) or even a NorthFace fleece, kahki shorts and hiking boots. Nirvana and the grunge look come from Washington, Eastern Washington has tons of Mormons and various other religious conservatives. No, the whole state is NOT covered in pine trees, and we do have ethnic diversity, lots of Asian-Americans in the tech fields, and migrant Hispanics working in the farm fields, 29 different Indian tribes, that did NOT live in teepees, as well as Russian immigrants and German settlements--that have sausage festivals and lentil days. There is a huge rivalry between our two "big" schools, WSU and UW, and yes, at my high school, being smart and in honors classes was cool~.

Still, I don't know if it is all graspable, the unique flavor of Washington state. So, when I come across a passage so uniquely Washington, I have to annotate it. This is from Sherman Alexie's book, "Ten Little Indians." This passage is in reference to a lady politican, and it just struck me as funny, and could only be written by a Washintonian author.

"Yet another pretty liberal from Seattle! Her black business suit probably converted into a rainproof tent. She wore eyeliner, lipstick, and three-inch pumps at dinner, but she likely wore stupid T-shirts (George can't spell W!), blue jeans, and huge scuffed boots at the office. She'd probably run twenty-three marathons and climbed Mount Rainier sixteen times, and had great calves and extraordinary upperbody strength, and most certainly had scored 1545 on her SATs and earned some highly challenging and profoundly useless degree from an Ivy Leaque chop shop. She probably still had a cassette of the Smiths stuck in her car stereo: "Meat is murder! Meat is murder! Meat is murder!" I wanted her to fall in love with me," (Ten Little Indians, pg. 57.

15 comments:

Panini said...

What interesting little things from you today. :)

As far at the poem...I don't want him to love him. He's a body luster and not a lover.

About Washington...oh I love our state. And I love that being smart was cool.

Panini said...

him to love me
(that's what I meant to write)

Scully said...

This is my intrepretation, feel free to take it with a grain of salt, but I think what he is meaning to say is that he loved the individual as an object from near and far, but didn't love the individual as a part of himself, as himself. A scream, a laugh, a cough, a sigh, all those are parts of us, part of who we are, they are informed by us and inform us, if that makes sense. Anyway, loved the entry, loved growing up in Washington, and I loved that being smart was cool in high school. Even if I wasn't.

aquamarine said...

The poem is definitely thought provoking to say the least.

I loved ML, but I would say I didn't enjoy living on the westside. Two completely different worlds from east to west.

Also agree about "school" (intellect) being cool. Good times.

Panini said...

Scully, what are you talking about? Miss "Top 10"! ;) Honestly!

Scully said...

I meant I wasn't cool.

aquamarine said...

AH, Scully, I would say that we had our own little niche in the social relm of high school!

Esperanza said...

I totally agree with what you are saying about the poem, I love that he is confessing he didnt' really love "her" whomever that is, because it implies an element of what real love is, how it is so much more than hands, and words (thats what he meant by tongue I think Panini), and ect.

Panini said...

okay, I can see where you guys are going with that. But when I read it...I thought of a man who hadn't given himself in a real way to the woman he was with. (still think it could be interpreted that way with a literal or dualistic tongue.) :)

Scully said...

Panini, I can agree about the dualistic image of the tongue (ok, that gets the award for 'most random phrase') and the idea that he hadn't totally succumbed to the true ideal of love at that point, but that it is past tense. He recongnizes his faults now. It seems almost mournful.

aquamarine said...

Agreed, Panini and Scully. I also think he is trying to say he has done the right things in 'tongue' or word and 'hands' in service or deeds for the loved one, but never reached the point where he loved her more than himself...all of the things only he could discern by a the body metphors he describes in the second paragraph.

Panini said...

good call Sculls & Walking
poor man...poor girl...poor me. Oh wait, scratch the last, it just seemed to fit so well.

Panini said...

Esperanza, what happened to Sarah Jane? Have you been able to get to her post this week?

Esperanza said...

Totally I agree.

Sherpa said...

I've heard this poem before, and I agree with Scully about the meaning.