Poetry Friday: Bread crumbs and Memories

h1 March 7th, 2008 by jules

from 'Childhood's Favorites and Fairy Stories'; Project Gutenberg; illustrator unknownAs mentioned yesterday, I happily stumbled upon the site for Fairy Tale Review, an annual literary journal devoted to contemporary fairy tales and a co-publication of The University of Alabama Press. It’s edited by Kate Bernheimer, an assistant professor of creative writing at The University of Alabama, who penned her first children’s book, a beguiling creation covered here at 7-Imp yesterday. Fairy Tale Review even has its own blog for keeping up with the latest news. This publication looks fabulous and is in excellent hands (check out the distinguished Advisory Board).

The current issue of Fairy Tale Review includes some poetry. One poem, “Diana, Hunting Words,” by the late Sarah Hannah — “equally fervent about the Monkees and Metallica” (I had to throw that in; she seemed like a fascinating person) — is accessible here in this current issue.


But today I’m going to share another one by Brent Hendricks — from a previous issue — entitled “Hansel.”

He decided to do it anyway—walked out the door
and dropped his first memory at the driveway’s edge.
It was the beginning scene, way back when,
of the kid with the miraculous leg of wood
galloping across a neighbor’s yard.

And on from there. At the city line
he left his grandmother’s smile
and by the time he strolled the frontage road
his friends from high school were roadside trash.

In the suburbs he unloaded his father’s funeral,
a cast of lovers, the Mexican sunset
that glazed the ocean red,
all images littering the path he walked
like bread crumbs leading back somewhere.

You can read the rest here. Happy Poetry Friday. The round-up is at The Simple and the Ordinary today.

{Note: I really wanted to include in this post this illustration by W.C. Burgard, but I didn’t think to ask him for permission in enough time. But go check it out, if you’re so inclined.}

18 comments to “Poetry Friday: Bread crumbs and Memories”

  1. That’s a stunner. It completely swept me up and surprised me at the end.

    And that image you linked to! Powerful.

  2. I’ve had to read that over and over. Thanks for introducing me to this journal overall — it’s really something. New fairytales!

  3. Thanks, you guys. Yeah, Sara, that ending is beautiful. Sarah Hannah’s poem is powerful, too. I set out to post about “Hansel,” but then had to throw in Sarah’s.

    And, yes, TadMack, the journal looks very interesting. If you see on their site there, they have what looks like short fiction entries, too. Or maybe they’re essays. I’ll have to explore more later.

  4. Oh thank you for this! I am going right back to read more up and down the page. I really like that Hansel poem. Brings up all sorts of connections!

  5. I love love love the Fairy Tale Review. You have to get the back issues!

  6. Oh, wow! That took me by surprise. What a great find. Thanks for sharing. The FTR looks really fascinating.

  7. “and there’s no longer any word for rain, only cloud.” The ending of Sarah Hannah’s poem blew me away.

    Loved Hansel, too. Thanks for pointing out the journal, which looks awesome.

  8. I love “he dropped his first memory at the driveway’s edge” – Great poem!

  9. Whoa. Dude. Those poems are both powerful-with-a-capital-P. And I agree with everyone – the ending of Hansel is a stunner. Thanks, J.

  10. Whoa.
    Re-read. Re-read. Re-read.
    “Is it some kind of infection, all this spit and struggle.”

  11. “Diana, Hunting Words” reminds me so much of Lorrie Moore’s “People Like that Are the Only People Here.” Have you ever read that story? Amazing, but difficult.

  12. No, but I’m pretty intrigued now.

  13. Love the Hansel poem – will have to go back and read more from FTR. “But the sky he saw/ was overfilling with sky” – !

  14. Ditto for me, Adrienne. Never read it. Sounds intriguing.

  15. Fairy Tale Review is a great magazine – I can proudly say I’ve received a rejection letter from them.

  16. Fairy Tale Review looks like a really interesting periodical. Thanks for letting us know about it.

  17. Forgive me for making everything about Will and Lyra right now, but that poem was so like the ghosts leaving the land of the dead and being able to dissolve their atoms in the living world again — “He was changing to light as his bones rose…” (Another Phillip Pullman moment, brought to you by Mary Lee, who just finished the Dark Materials trilogy.)

  18. Forgive you, Mary Lee? We embrace All Things Pullman around here at 7-Imp.

    Dana, yes, I look forward to seeing a copy of the publication. It looks great.

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