Joanne Kyger

Joanne Kyger Poems

'The best thing about the past

is that it's over'

You know when you write poetry you find
the architecture of your lineage your teachers
like Robert Duncan for me gave me some glue for the heart
Beats which gave confidence

Your heart is fine feeling the widest
possible empathy for the day and its inhabitants

Into the party, with engraved invitations, I am bored when
I realize the champagne in the decrepit bowl is going to get
filled up a lot. Well then, on the greens in front of the
Mansion are walking Tom Clark and Ted Berrigan, what chums!

Morning is such a welcome time. It doesn't demand
much from the pocket- Some coffee, a cigarette,
and the day starts, full of optimism & clarity of hope
While the Muse holds her head, and the crazy Elementals

I reject as absolutely false all opinion in which I have the least doubt.
As our senses often deceive us I assume they show us illusion, and must
reject them. As reason is subject to error, and who can offer more living
proof of that than I, I must reject the faculty or reason.

In a room getting ready for a party
with Dotty,
Ducan MacNaughton comes in and says
'Stephen Rodefer is on his way here to kill you!

The grasses are light brown
and ocean comes in
long shimmering lines
under the fleet from last night

I saw the
dead bird on the sidewalk
his neck uncovered
and prehistoric

In Tamalpais is a big crystal. An acquaintance told
me the story. A Miwok was giving his grandfather’s medicine
bag to the Kroeber Museum in Berkeley. He said this man
took him over the mountain Tamalpais, at a certain time

Well, you had to find it some
where another person passed simplicity
on to you, the practice of some syllables
the position of a seated body and you believe

what I wanted to say
was in the broad
form of being there

'these are extraordinary times'
so we can do whatever we want ha ha

It was a beautiful golden day
Now a black split shape
scuttles under
de foot. So long, Sayonara.

I woke up about 2:30 this morning and thought about Philip's
It is bright lemon yellow, with a little brim
all the way around, and a lime green hat band,

'Oh Man is the highest type of animal existing
or known to have existed
but differs from other animals
more in his extraordinary mental

I wonder what the ocean is like today?
Cold and flat, hot and flat?
Cold and whippy,, tide out, in? The sand
will be warm, I'm sure

He is pruning the privet

of sickly sorrow desolation
in loose pieces of air he goes clip clip clip
the green blooming branches fall—‘they’re getting out

It unfolds and ripples like a banner, downward. All the stories
come folding out. The smells and flowers begin to come back, as
the tapestry is brightly colored and brocaded. Rabbits and

Here in Oaxaca it's the Night of the Radishes
Now I wave from the green
balcony above the gardenia
in my shoes without socks the sun

Joanne Kyger Biography

Joanne Kyger is an American poet. Her poetry is influenced by her practice of Zen Buddhism and her ties to the poets of Black Mountain, the San Francisco Renaissance, and the Beat generation. Overview Kyger studied at the University of California, Santa Barbara, before moving to San Francisco, in 1957, and becoming involved with the poetry scene around Jack Spicer and Robert Duncan. In 1960 she joined Gary Snyder (whom she had met in San Francisco in 1958) in Japan. They were married on February 28, immediately after her arrival. She later travelled to India with Snyder, Allen Ginsberg and Peter Orlovsky, where she met with the Dalai Lama. She returned to the United States in 1964 and her first book, The Tapestry and the Web was published the next year. In 1965, she married Jack Boyce. They separated in the early seventies. Kyger has published more than twenty books of poetry and prose, including Going On: Selected Poems, 1958–1980, (1983); and, Just Space: poems, 1979-1989 (1991). She has lived in Bolinas since 1968, where she has edited the local newspaper. She has also done some occasional teaching at the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics of the Naropa Institute, in Boulder, Colorado. In 2000, her 1981 collection of autobiographical writings was republished as Strange Big Moon: Japan and India Journals, 1960-1964, which Anne Waldman has called "one of the finest books ever in the genre of 'journal writing'". More recent poetry collections include God Never Dies (Blue Press), The Distressed Look (Coyote Books), Again (La Alameda Press), and As Ever: Selected Poems published by Penguin Books. Her most recent book is About Now: Collected Poems from National Poetry Foundation. It won the 2008 PEN Oakland Josephine Miles National Literary Award for Poetry. In 2006 she was awarded a grant from the Foundation for Contemporary Arts Grants to Artists Award.)

The Best Poem Of Joanne Kyger

Night Palace

'The best thing about the past

is that it's over'

when you die.

you wake up

from the dream

that's your life.

Then you grow up

and get to be post human

in a past that keeps happening

ahead of you


Joanne Kyger Comments

Metin Sahin 10 January 2012

very good poems..THANKS

3 0 Reply
Metin Sahin 10 January 2012

good ppoems...thanks

3 0 Reply

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