By Elise Partridge
From methods of Goingfor SteveWill or not it's like paragliding—gossamer takeoff, seedlike drifting downinto a sunlit, unforeseen grove?Or ski-jumping—headlong soaring,ski-tips piercing clouds,crystal revelations awesome my goggles?. . . . Skittery flicker of a glare-weary lizardstartled into the sheltering wings of a leaf,rusting freighter with a brimming holdshimmering onto a red part. . . .Sad rower driven from shore,I'll disappear like circles summonedby an oar's dip.However I burn via to the following atmosphere,let your pricey face be the very last thing I see. Whether writing poems approximately North American lifestyles and panorama; or love poems; or elegies for friends and family; or poems on critical, debilitating disorder and the ameliorations it will probably effect—Elise Partridge deals in Chameleon Hours phrases solid by way of agony and braveness. filled with wit and empathy, Partridge’s poems draw idea from assets as whimsical as tortoises and pontoons, as poignant as a homeless girl taking protect within a submit workplace on a wintry weather evening, and as deeply own as her personal melanoma prognosis at a tender age. Chameleon Hours is a ebook concerning the rewards of being reminded of one’s personal mortality and the lyric expression of lifestyles in all its intensity. “In their abundant, embracing, nuanced urge for food for sensory event, [Partridge’s] poems in achieving an ardent, compassionate and unsentimental vision.”—Robert Pinsky, Washington Post “Partridge’s notable poems pursue a cautious thinker’s craving for abandon, a devoted good friend and partner’s want for switch. responsive to truth, to what she sees and is aware, Partridge still makes area for what's wild, outdoor and inside of us—for the fears and the blanks of chemotherapy, for sharp diversifications inside (and with no) frames of metre and rhyme, and for the welcome consistencies of married love. She has realized detail-work, and persistence, from Elizabeth Bishop, yet she has made different virtues her personal: riffs on accepted words open startling vistas or even her love poems get attractively functional. Hers is a welcome invitation: let’s hear in.”—Stephen Burt “Reading Chameleon Hours, i locate myself marveling on the success of every heron, mosquito, box of Queen Anne’s Lace, every body, position, factor or situation during this attractive publication, to have Elise Partridge’s beautiful and certain awareness. and the way fortunate we're to get to hear in as she bargains each one of them her perfect ear; the booklet is filled with understated sonic gem stones like ‘a kickball immediately into purple lilac.’ In ‘Chemo unintended effects: Memory,’ after describing ‘groping within the thicket’ for ‘the note i need . . . scrabbling like a squirrel at the oak’s a ways side,’ she tells us ‘I may well continually pull the reward / from the lucky-dip barrel; scoop the correct jewel / from my dragon’s trove. . . .’ We after all already understand this. It’s obtrusive in each one of these poems.”—Jacqueline Osherow Praise for Fielder’s Choice“Partridge is a technical wizard for whom considering and feeling will not be separate actions. She is a hawk-like observer of the actual . . . time and again ascending to pitch-perfect verse.”—Ken Babstock, Globe and Mail (Canada) (20080210)
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Extra resources for Chameleon Hours (Phoenix Poets Series)
But gradually, grudging, you began to ease it tenderly. Its freckles you knew like a face’s. Your calling was to take it in your arms. • 40 • One dusk you crouched, bracing yourself for the bound back down. A minute passed as you massaged your calves, hardly noticing. Five minutes, six— you hauled yourself over the crest beside it, laid your palms against it like a physician. Suspiciously you waited. It didn’t move. Afraid of letting one flare of hope char you, you huddled below. It sat immobile for hours, a new-laid egg.
47 • Arcadia Everything at your farm was new to me— nub-wing ducks tipping around a nest; leaf-hands reaching from a sassafras tree; and even guinea hens seemed charming there— shrieking across the yard, dewlaps flapping, while the shepherd mutt dozed on in his chair. I learned, that summer, not just to walk by when hummingbirds backpedaled an instant catching the sweetness from a flower’s eye; to notice what I’d never have seen without your love—fields seared for second growth; a beetle ambling in Thai silk, turquoise-green.
The ostensible sorrow is the boy discovering death, desertion. . ) And often rhythmical musical things aren’t good, they’re padding for not feeling. What prevents that here? It’s awfully eloquent wherever you pick it up. ‘From such as now they start the scene revisiting’: this has a tender Pindaric grandeur—I don’t know if you can say that. It’s about a child— that’s not a Whitman subject, childhood. His saddest poem in some ways. Hard to think that birds meant very much to him. . ” • 38 • On “Goodbye My Fancy” by Walt Whitman “‘Goodbye My Fancy’ he intended as his last poem .