Friday, 4 January 2013

Heart Labour

Maggie Anderson

When I work too hard and then lie down,
even my sleep is sad and all worn out.
You want me to name the specific sorrows?
They do not matter.  You have your own.
Most of the people in the world
go out to work, day after day,
with their voices chained in their throats.
I am swimming a narrow, swift river.
Upstream, the clouds have already darkened
and deep blue holes I cannot see
churn up under the smooth flat rocks.
The Greeks have a word, paropono,
for the complaint without answer,
for how the heart labors, while
all the time our faces appear calm
enough to float through in the moonlight.

The poem "heart Labor" is written by Maggie Anderson. This poem is taken from Maggie Anderson's collection of poems "WINDFALL: NEW AND SELECTED POEMS"
This poem about the importance of a mother’s work in the home and the lack of appreciation. Hard work can lead to tiredness and sorrow even when one has found their true calling. In fact, a true devotion to a calling would often cycle through the feelings that are depicted by the speaker in the poem.
In this poem the mother is the speaker. She says, when i sleep and take rest, even at that time i don't feel good. Even my sleep is sad and old, i don't feel relaxed. The speaker in the poem is carrying on her conversation with someone and is sharing her pains and sorrows. The person whom she is talking to wants to hear her all sorrows but she refuses because she is concerned about the person she is talking to. And says that sadness doesn't matter to you because you have your own. She then questions that why aren't people expressing what they feel? why are they working so hard without even complaining anything.
After that she says that she is swimming a narrow river and up the clouds are dark and its going to rain heavy. Here she means that she is covered with sadness and she can't take it anymore because it is going beyond her limit. Then she says that the clouds are so dark that she cannot see the blue sky, meaning she can’t see happiness in her life at all.
Later on she expresses that she is being churned up smoothly. She says that in Greek there's a word called ‘paropono’ which means no answer for a complaint and also for the heart’s labor. They don't know our pain because our calm means we don't show and express our pain and is enough to float into moonlight. By all this she is trying to say, don't feel choked by life choices and heart labors in her everyday routine and search for a more meaningful purpose in your life.


By Maggie Anderson...

This is going to cost you.
If you really want to hear a
country fiddle, you have to listen
hard, high up in its twang and needle.
You can't be running off like this,
all knotted up with yearning,
following some train whistle,
can't hang onto anything that way.
When you're looking for what's lost,
everything's a sign,
but you have to stay right up next to
the drawl and pull of the thing
you thought you wanted, had to
have it, could not live without it.
Honey, you will lose your beauty
and your handsome sweetie, this whine,
this agitation, the one you sent for
with your leather boots and your guitar.
The lonesome snag of barbed wire you have
wrapped around your heart is cash money,
honey, you will have to pay

 “Ontological” This poem is written by Maggie Anderson. “Ontological” this poem is a part of Maggie Anderson’s collection of poems A SPACE FILLED WITH MOVING which was published in 1992.
“Ontological,” uses the idiom of an Appalachian dialect, in contrast with the philosophical title (“of or relating to the nature of being”), to add layers of meaning.
Maggie Anderson starts the poem by saying that if you want to hear country's violin, if you want that happiness should come into your life then you will have to work hard for it. You will have to listen to the strings and needles. She says you can’t run away like this when you have loads of things lost. Then she expresses that just as we go behind whistle of the train, over here it means following the crowd. she says just by following what others are doing we don't have to land up doing something wrong. Anderson then says that when we are looking for what you have lost and are trying to find it, each new step will give you a new hint to find the lost thing. Anderson over here has made a nice contrast between lost and occurrence of something.
Then poet says that there will be many hurdles in your path. Many things will provoke you to take the wrong step and lose your goal. But you have to stay right next to it, and snatch away the thing you thought you wanted to achieve, you had to have and you would never be able to live without it.In this attempt of seeking happiness and in this hard work you will lose your beauty and your handsome loved one, this complaining cry and the agitation will be lost which you had sent for your leather boots and guitar. Finally Maggie say that the lonely, unexpected piece of thorny wire which means loneliness and sorrows which are wrapped around your heart like hurting wire is the cash money, for your happiness and you will have to pay for it. And throw your sadness away.

Beyond Even This.....

By Maggie Anderson

Who would have thought the afterlife would
look so much like Ohio? A small town place,
thickly settled among deciduous trees.
I lived for what seemed a very short time.
Several things did not work out.
Casually almost, I became another one
of the departed, but I had never imagined
the tunnel of hot wind that pulls
the newly dead into the dry Midwest
and plants us like corn. I am
not alone, but I am restless.
There is such sorrow in these geese
flying over, trying to find a place to land
in the miles and miles of parking lots
that once were soft wetlands. They seem
as puzzled as I am about where to be.
Often they glide, in what I guess is
a consultation with each other,
getting their bearings, as I do when
I stare out my window and count up
what I see. It's not much really:
one buckeye tree, three white frame houses,
one evergreen, five piles of yellow leaves.
This is not enough for any heaven I had
dreamed, but I am taking the long view.
There must be a backcountry of the beyond,
beyond even this and farther out,
past the dark smoky city on the shore
of Lake Erie, through the landlocked passages
to the Great Sweetwater Seas.

“Beyond Even This” This poem is written by Maggie Anderson. Which is taken from her A SPACE FILLED WITH MOVING a three-part collection of quintessentially American poems. This collection of poems was published in 1992. And “Beyond Even This” is a part of this collection.
In this poem Ms. Anderson has expressed her hopefulness in what lies beyond boundaries, even in the imaginative geography of an Ohio-like afterlife. She addresses this poem to herself. The poem starts with comparison of after life with Ohio. Maggie Anderson says that she had never thought that her after life would be like the small town of Ohio which is surrounded by thick trees all around. She feels that in this real world she lived for a very short period of time and could not achieve what she wanted to. She takes her death very casually.
Over here Anderson has described the way of death a very terrible one. She faces the reality now. She had never imagined that the tunnel of hot winds which is pulling the newly dead’s to those dry Rocky Mountains and planting them like corn. Then she says that in that journey she is not the only one because of which she feels secured but on the other hand she is feeling restless. The poet looks around and finds geese flying like her. Here she compares her as well as other newly dead’s as geese who are trying to find their destinations. They too are depressed as if they have lost something. In this big hard world they too are trying to find a soft little place for themselves. Anderson says that all are lost and all seemed to be very confused because everything was very difficult to understand. She expresses that very often all used to fly very smoothly which she felt as if they are advising each other about something, behaving the way what they actually are. Same as what she does when she looks out of her window and she sees what she thinks is not reality- a buckeye tree, white frame houses, a evergreen, and piles of yellow leaves. She is then depressed and says she had never dreamed of such heaven but again switches over and says may be I taking a long view. Anderson over here is hoping that there must be another country beyond even this. That country will be different from the city which is like Ohio. It won’t be like this dark polluted city which is on the banks of Lake Erie; she knows that she will move from those lands to sweet water seas. Here she makes a nice contrast between landlocked passages and sweet water seas.
The tone from the command of colloquial speech and the 'plain settings gives us a sense of 'home' even in the ominous 'backcountry of the beyond, '-a command of voice that is assuring and persuasive. The poem seems linked to a tradition ('Ohio? A small town place... the dry Midwest, ') -Wines burg, Spoon River, Grover’s' Corners, but extends it, moves beyond even this turns a new page-transcends, ('... past the dark smoky city on the shore/ of Lake Erie, through the landlocked passages/ to the Great Sweetwater Seas.' The language of the poem is very simple and easy to understand. Anderson has made a very good comparison of after life with Ohio. There is no rhyme scheme in the poem.

Thursday, 3 January 2013

Maggie Anderson's Style of Writng

Maggie Anderson teaches creative writing and directs the Wick Poetry Program at Kent State University, and through this program, Ms. Anderson is known not only as a writer and a teacher but also as a supporter of emerging poets. Critics have praised Ms. Anderson’s work for being “confident, lyrical and compassionate,” and these qualities stood out in everything she read.
In Anderson’s poems the margins, the spaces between, the possibility of moving back and forth between the public and the private world is beautiful. Ms. Anderson has written, and her poetry often alludes to the creative potential of in-betweenness. Born in New York City to a mother from western Pennsylvania and a father from West Virginia, she has described a childhood of “moving around a lot” but visiting West Virginia every summer. The influence of her rural Appalachian heritage is evident in her work, which often contrasts the common language of popular culture, the exalted language of universities, and the more unschooled language of Appalachian storytelling. These tensions between different worlds, languages, and boundaries help give Maggie Anderson’s poems their powerful impact.
From her latest collection of poetry, Windfall, and from her new work in progress, The Sleep Writer. She has interest in personal and poetic voices, and her poem, “Ontological,” in which she uses the idiom of an Appalachian dialect, in contrast with the philosophical title-of or relating to the nature of being, to add layers of meaning. Introducing “Beyond Even This,” Ms. Anderson expressed her hopefulness in what lies beyond boundaries.
In following the traditions of Appalachian storytelling, Maggie Anderson invests her poetry with a close attention to detail and powerfully specific imagery. Her works thus become vehicles for recording fleeting experiences. Maggie Anderson then started writing about current political events, she explained her reason for writing it, a reason which seems to fit all of her poetry: “This is the least I can do to remember; to remember what happens, to remember what they told us to forget.”

Life of Maggie Anderson

Maggie Anderson was born on September 23, 1948, in New York City. She is an American poet and editor with roots in Appalachia. Anderson attended West Virginia Wesleyan College from 1966–68 and earned a bachelor’s degree in English, with high honors, from West Virginia University in 1970. Her M.A. in English (Creative Writing) in 1973 and an M.S.W. in 1977 were also from WVU. She worked as a rehabilitation counselor for blind and visually impaired clients at the West Virginia Rehabilitation Center from 1973-77. Beginning in 1979, she worked as poet-in-residence for ten years, in schools, senior centers, correctional facilities and libraries in West Virginia, Ohio, and Pennsylvania. She has served as visiting writer at several universities, including the University of Pittsburgh, the University of Oregon, the Pennsylvania State University, Hamilton College, and West Virginia University

In 1989, Anderson began teaching creative writing at Kent State University and was appointed coordinator of the Wick Poetry Program in 1992. In 2004, when the Wick Poetry Program celebrated its 20th anniversary and received a $2 million endowment to create the Wick Poetry Center in the College of Arts and Sciences, Anderson was named director. Anderson was on the founding committee of the Northeast Ohio Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing and served as Kent State University’s Campus Coordinator for the NEOMFA from 2003–2006 and as Director of the Northeast Ohio MFA Consortium from 2006-2009. Upon her retirement from KSU in 2009, the Maggie Anderson Endowment Fund was established in her honor. The Fund aims to assist talented writing students at the university with writing-related travel expenses.

Anderson is the author of several poetry collections, the most recent of which is Windfall: New and Selected Poems and the founder and editor of the Wick Poetry First Book Series and the Wick Poetry Chapbook Series for Ohio Poets. In 1971 she co-founded Trellis, a poetry journal, with Winston Fuller and Irene McKinney, and served as editor until 1981.

Anderson’s awards and honors include two fellowships in poetry from the National Endowment for the Arts and grants from the Ohio Arts Council and the MacDowell Colony, including an Isabella Gardner Fellowship.