By William Matthews
This is often the touchingly entitled number of poems William Matthews had accomplished almost immediately earlier than demise, simply after his fifty-fifth birthday in November 1997. Is loss of life ever solely unforeseen? no longer, possibly, via a collector of expertise, a connoisseur of language, who can check with "death flickering in you're keen on a pilot light." In finally, Matthews looks taking a look his final on all issues stunning: track, foodstuff and wine, love. within the attractive primary poem, "Dire Cure," which varieties a type of backbone to the booklet, he describes the extraordinary implications of the "heroic measures" that kept the lifestyles and restored the well-being of his spouse from "a children's melanoma (doesn't that possessive holiday your heart?)." He conjures up the demise of his favourite jazz musician, Charles Mingus. He speaks of cats, canine, pigs, sheep, of the previous, of historical past, of joys proposed, yet particularly, along with his attribute cozy wit, of language and its quiddities: "My love says i feel too rattling a lot and perhaps she's right." finally is the final word from probably the most pensive and scrumptious of all our poets.
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Additional resources for After All: Last Poems
Before him the red wheat bends, the sky is cloudless, smokeless, and blue. Where he has passed, the hot stalks spread in streaks, like a shell exploding, but that is behind him. With stiff, bony shoulders he mows his way into the colors of summer. 50 Turkey Vultures Circling above us, their wing-tips fanned like fingers, it is as if they are smoothing one of those tissue-paper sewing patterns over the pale blue fabric of the air, touching the heavens with leisurely pleasure, just a word or two called back and forth, taking all the time in the world, even though the sun is low and red in the west, and they have fallen behind with the making of shrouds.
It was hard to hold up your end of the gossip with your coffee cold, but it was a special occasion, just the same, to sit at her kitchen table and sip the bitter percolation of the past week’s rumors from cups it had taken a year to collect at the grocery, with one piece free for each five pounds of flour. 29 Zenith It was part of her parlor’s darkness during the war years — its Gothic cabinet, its shadowy speaker behind a thin lattice like the face of a priest — but when my grandmother snapped its switch each evening to tune in the news, it opened the tiny Japanese fan of its dial and light spilled over her fingers, swollen and stiff.
He would surely do something to spoil it if the painter would give him the chance. 49 4. the veteran in a new field A lone man scything wheat His back is turned to us, his white shirt the brightest thing in the painting. Old trousers, leather army suspenders. Before him the red wheat bends, the sky is cloudless, smokeless, and blue. Where he has passed, the hot stalks spread in streaks, like a shell exploding, but that is behind him. With stiff, bony shoulders he mows his way into the colors of summer.
After All: Last Poems by William Matthews