Postmodern Collage Poetry

A blog about writing collage poetry, post modern poetry, multi lingual poetry

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Robert Creeley Deo Gratia

Robert Creeley-Deo Gratia

Robert Creeley died today and I am beside myself. I was not a friend or mentee of Mr Creeley but he did do kindnesses for me a poetic nobody without the 'right' pedigree he did not have to be generious but he was.

I first met Bob in Dallas Texas at a reading, he signed my well worn copy of his New and Collected and said he would correspond with me. I send him a poem which he critiqued- I was being critiqued by Robert Creeley this care for another human being the care for the little things made Robert Creeley a great poet and a great man. His words meant allot to me as a younger poet.

Later in my life I encountered the Poet in Camden, New Jersey at the Walt Whitman Center. I had just lost my job with a Dot Com and my wife and I were on the verge of financial ruin but I drove down to Camden to hear him read and he remembered my work and we corresponded again for a short time. He gave me advice that led to my book's final edit and I believe it was his editing that convinced my publisher Geoffrey Gatza and Blaze Vox to take my book. I owe Robert Creeley a debt of gratitude for this kindness.

Later when I started Robert Creeley consented to be interviewed it took some time but he did the profile and completed it only a month before he died. He answered questions with care and with respect and his answers were meaningful.

I only wish the Robert Creeley had won the Nobel Prize because he deserved it more than allot of other poets.

In the end Creeley death is a break with our poetic fathers and mothers. Creeley was mentored by some of the greatest poets our American Idiom has produced Pound, Olson, Williams, Cummings he was friends with some of our great poets
Levertov, Duncan, and others and our great Artists like DeKooning, and Klein and he was a mentor to so many of our new dear poets like Lisa Jarnot, and Peter Gizzi, and so many others for whose work we are blessed and I mean blessed not fortunate.

God I believe speaks most clearly through poets and artists. Religion is a thing by bureaucrats and businesspeople who think they are artists. But real spirituality comes from poetry and art and God is in this purely.

In the sheer magisty and magic of Hagia Sofia, Chartre Cathedral, Gregorian Chant, the Bamyan Buddhas, the Dome of the Rock or Macchu Picchu God is imbued in the stones and in the place and he/she dwells there inspite of our human frailties and human vulgarities. I believe that poetry is God's greatest creation-whether it is the poetry of the Bible, Koran or Gita, the poetry of Dante, St Francis, Lao Tsu or Rumi or the poetry of Pound or HD or Robert Creeley God is there singing truth amid the petty stupid and violent-

Robert Creeley's poetry was part of God's singing.

As a Catholic I believe in the Communion of Saints and that we can ask these saints to intercede for us with God for our world. I know that today Robert Creeley is there interceding for Poetry and that the heavens welcomed him with open arms and Psalmic poems.

Deo Gratia