Featured Poet: George Jack, Concord
George Jack was born in Cambridge, MA, and other than that he has been a nearly lifelong resident of New Hampshire. He is the author of three books, The Cellophane Tuxedo (1998) and Frost Heaves and Flannel (2003), as well as the forthcoming book Againaissance (San Francisco CA: Cosmopsis Books, 2008). His work has also appeared in numerous publications and in several anthologies, including the National Collegiate Poetry Anthology and The 2008 Poet’s Guide to New Hampshire. George was a volunteer for the Children’s Poetry in the Libraries Day 2007, and has been an enthusiastic guest host, featured reader, and performer at poetry readings and venues throughout the state. George is a fully commissioned Justice of the Peace for the State of New Hampshire; a brown belt in Uechi-Ryu karate; a cast member of the New Hampshire Radio Theatre; and the proud father of a 2 year old daughter, Isabella. He works as a Project Coordinator in the Data Overrides department at OneSource Information Services in Concord, MA.
About “Below the Romantishadows”, George writes:
Love is one of the oldest themes in poetry. One of the challenges of the writer of a love poem is to make an attempt at exploring different perspectives of the ‘love setting’ as it relates to not just the sought after mood but the aesthetic components of the piece; the impression of one lover through the other lover’s array of senses, the atmosphere in which a ‘love scene’ takes place, both the timelessness and the fleeting qualities of the love ideal’s logical extension. “Romantishadows” is a perspective on not one particular ‘love setting’, but a celebration of a particular stereotypical element in the ‘love scene’. Since the light and heat given off by a candle flame seems to be dispensed up and out with a certain frugality of temperature and energy, I attempted to make sure that the descriptive terms utilized had a calm economy to them as well. For example, “Conflagratiously” is intended to convey both a depiction of the flame and temper that with an idea that there is a graciousness with which it burns and dispenses the gift of its power. Ironically, the object that the speaker looks toward to 'emblemify' love may never truly know love because it may only participate in the action of love as actor in the background; this piece is my attempt at venerating all love scenes from arguably one of love poetry's more venerable vantage points.
BELOW THE ROMANTISHADOWS
Undercelebrated bit player,
Only love itself could give the tally of
How many sensual scenarios and
Seduction scenes in which you have played a
Supporting role, noncredited and
Conflagratiously standing aside, letting lovers
Occupy the spotlight, which ironically often
Only you were there to bestow upon them,
As they weave their impassionations into the realms and
Fabric of history, poetry, mythology
As you glow invitingly and observe politely,
Pyro-stemmed and posture perfect.
Promethiastically I observe the ritual, freshly
Releasing the sunset-silent slimcandesence of your
You are Venus De Milo’s slowly receding right arm, your hand
Signs to me like a ballet-fingered arson-blossom.
I linger, rapt, as you relate to me in a kind of flicker-code
Details of the more legendary rendezvous
To which you were the essential, bystanderously immortal and
Interpersonal beacon of privacy.
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George Jack may be emailed: [email protected]