måndag 17 oktober 2016

Our body, our forces, our life

  När jag skrev att måndagarna skulle ägnas åt tio nya författare från Split this rock så var det en sanning med modifikation. För ett av inslagen gäller en antologi, en fantastisk samling dikter om funktionsnedsättning. Nu har jag läst den, Beauty is a verb (2011), och jag kan direkt säga att boken vore en självklar kandidat till Årets Antologi om den hade getts ut i år. Jag har svårt att tänka mig att jag kommer att läsa en mer betydelsefull bok än den här, inom en överskådlig framtid.
  Ibland har jag svårt att hitta tre intressanta diktexempel till mina inlägg. Ikväll låg svårigheten i att välja endast tre.


The origin of my wheelchair, by Petra Kuppers
(From Beauty is a verb : the new poetry of disability. El Paso, TX : Cinco Puntos Press, 2011.)

It had foremothers, yes,
cradles an ancient history
drenched in veteran's blood, snakebite,
sepsis and the chlorophyll-rich juices of the healer.
But when I touch the steel wheel, I feel
that it grew as a silver plant
in a waterless waste, drew from a deep clear well,
a shoot pushed hard through the crust,
thrust past caked clay and grey rock.
With the effort of metal and bone,
the plant grasped the air, no resistance
pressed fast moving cells,
it arched up, spiraled back onto itself,
completed a circle that pushes far out,
forward, on and on:
my body, propelled by evergreen forces,
touches fire and earth, forge and flow,
my finger tight on the rim.
I know what I wish for:
below not only clouded blood,
clay clod, and the deep worm's coil,
below runs the clear, clean water.

(Petra Kuppers, born 1968, is a community performance artist and a disability culture activist. She is a Professor of English, Women's Studies, Theatre and Art and Design, teaching mainly in Performance Studies and Disability Studies, at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and she serves on the faculty of Port Townsend's Goddard College MFA program in Interdisciplinary Arts.) Källa: Wikipedia


  Nästa dikt handlar om multipel skleros och är skriven av Laurie Clements Lambeth.

The shaking, by Laurie Clements Lambeth
(From Beauty is a verb : the new poetry of disability. El Paso, TX : Cinco Puntos Press, 2011.)

I know I scared you last night by shaking,
the only time you were forced to share
a dream that shook me to waking.

Your left hand pressed upon my aching
thigh as it kicked and flailed; how compare
your strength to synapse whims, wild shaking?

You know my nervous system could be taking
over any time; disease is unfair.
Remember: it seems bad when you're waking.

Many times I've trembled when you're making
love to me, my round shoulders open, bare,
but never have I broken into such shaking,

when my body shows us our lives breaking
apart. Still, you hold me. Your kind is rare,
who know (or pretend) dreams seem worse upon waking.

Surprising you stayed: here you are, forsaking
quiet nights for me. Will you be there
when it worsens, my gait palsied with shaking?
Who could be strong enough to hold back its waking?

(Laurie Clements Lambeth, born in Newport Beach, California, is an American poet, specializing in the topic of disability. She was raised in Laguna Beach and Palos Verdes, California. She graduated from the University of Houston with an MFA and PhD. Her work has appeared in The Paris Review, Indiana Review, Mid-American Review, Seneca Review, and The Iowa Review.) Källa: Wikipedia


  En av de känslostarkare texterna ur boken handlar om synen på sig själv, före och efter en "korrigering".

What you mourn, by Sheila Black
(From Beauty is a verb : the new poetry of disability. El Paso, TX : Cinco Puntos Press, 2011.)

The year they straightened my legs,
the young doctor said, meaning to be kind,
Now you will walk straight
on your wedding day
, but what he could not
imagine is how even on my wedding day
I would arch back and wonder
about the body I had before I was changed,
how I would have nested in it,
made it my home, how I repeated his words
when I wished to stir up my native anger
feel like the exile I believed
I was, imprisoned in a foreign body
like a person imprisoned in a foreign land
forced to speak a strange tongue
heavy in the mouth, a mouth full of stones.

Crippled they called us when I was young
later the word was disabled and then differently abled,
but those were all names given by outsiders,
none of whom could imagine
that the crooked body they spoke of,
the body, which made walking difficult
and running practically impossible,
except as a kind of dance, a sideways looping
like someone about to fall
headlong down and hug the earth, that body
they tried so hard to fix, straighten was simply mine,
and I loved it as you love your own country,
the familiar lay of the land, the unkempt trees,
the smell of mowed grass, down to the nameless
flowers at your feet - clover, asphodel,
and the blue flies that buzz over them.

(Sheila Black, an American poet, has written over 40 books for children and young adults as well as four poetry collections. She was a 2000: U.S. co-winner of the Frost-Pellicer Frontera Prize, and a 2012 Witter Bynner Fellowship. She graduated from Barnard College and received her master's degree from the University of Montana. Sheila Black was diagnosed with XLH, commonly referred to as Vitamin-D Resistant Rickets, at a young age.) Källa: Wikipedia

[X-kromosombunden hypofosfatemisk rakit (XLH, X-linked hypophosphatemia) är en sjukdom som innebär att fosfatvärdena i blodet är låga (hypofosfatemi), vilket i sin tur leder till bristande kalkomsättning med skelettförändringar. Problem från tänderna, som exempelvis tandrotsinfektioner, är också typiskt för sjukdomen.] Källa: Socialstyrelsen

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