Urgency

What is meant these days when critics and reviewers say this or that poet’s work has the flavor of urgency? Do they mean the urgency of the package that must be delivered not because of its contents, but because the sender has paid the more expensive rate? Do they mean speed: to beat the next two cars to the mall exit after hours? What do they mean when they praise the killer line and the break: do they drop a kick turn sharper than the boy skateboarding in the empty parking lot? Do they mean the sudden singed smell and the hank of hair that comes away in the grips of a hot iron as the teen makes her YouTube beauty tutorial? Even this late in the century, there are fields that hum at the edges from their proximity to barbed wire or an electric fence. Where can one walk where there aren’t bones buried underfoot? A man I went to school with was abducted three years ago as he waited in the early hours for a bus to take him into town. What the stones would say if they had tongues. How the smallest animals know when the merest shadow has crossed the yard.

 

In response to an entry from the Morning Porch.

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