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I was delighted to see the SICA-USA blog post written about my new book DaySong Miracle (Past 62). I knew it was coming, but to read the way my Subud brother Jim O’Halloran handled the information was beautiful. He and I have collaborated many times over the years, including at  many Bradner Gardens concerts where I read poetry and his band accompanied me. Jim has a meticulous way of approaching things to which I, a fellow Virgo, can relate. Here’s what I wrote in response to his questions:

“The DaySong is a day-long writing ritual that was designed for participants in my ongoing online workshops Life as Rehearsal for the Poem” and Poetics as Cosmology.” After 56 days of writing postcard poems in the Poetry Postcard Fest, which SICA-USA has sponsored for three years (thank you), the exercise is designed for poets to stretch their practice from 12-14 line poems (the spatial restriction of the typical postcard) to a temporal restriction, 24 hours. I have always been convinced that the best poets can have a range of styles or methods to get to the heart of the poem, the heart of the self. Matt Trease has done at least one DaySong and notes one day is synecdoche for a life. I think this is true and the whole exercise should be like a ritual. I took inspiration from Michael McClures instructions for his Personal Universe Deck. He noted that when you create the Personal Universe Deck, you should be alone and that not even the cat should interrupt you. He did not state it specifically, but it is to be a sacred occasion. For a Subud person, the beginning of the DaySong should be similar to the words: Relax, Begin” at the beginning of Latihan. My objective was to get a successful poem. When composing spontaneously, one uses the poem as an act of discovery. I have always been interested in real poetry, that is not using poems as rhetoric, which I think is a more superficial level of consciousness. To seek to discover rather than to tell us what you think is an approach to getting beyond the ego. I do have some rhetorical poems and hopefully the rhetoric is noble, but I try as best I can to maintain a state of surrender to the language, to what its needs are. As Robert Duncan said: I dont use language, I cooperate with language.”

In addition to these goals, I wanted to honor my memory of my three friends who died at age 62, the age I was turning two weeks after this DaySong was being written. Two of the friends I had known since 4th grade and the other since about 10th grade, so were talking about longtime friendships.”

Thank you Jim, SICA-USA and Subud! Read the whole post here:

Link to buy the book