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Song of the Ocarina Thom Wilkerson

Song of the Ocarina

Thom Wilkerson

Published 1965
ISBN :
Hardcover
71 pages
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 About the Book 

This is a book published in 1965 by a poet born locally. I found it at a library book sale. It had been given to a local community college library in 1977, which has gone digital and thus was discarding pretty much everything. I have to admit there isnt much reason for a college library to have this, but I would hope a local library might keep this as a record of the development of a local poet. I reviewed a later collection of his in this group (http://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/5...) two years ago. There isnt much similarity between the two collections. The later work is more spare and mature but also lacks some of the spark in this one. This earlier work is horribly guilty at times of the sin of florid language and a desire to use every abandoned word in the English language:Attacking winsome love. The congelation of (as quickly as Man knowsMan) beckoned to choristers and a dirge resounded in the sky.Dont stop reading yet. One more example of the folly that many young poets must pass through and then some more promising examples. Here is an example of youthful profundity:If I love I love becauseI am loveand would know it.But he really does have a poets sensibility and had some surprising turns and metaphors, such as a waterfall waiting like a sneeze/unwanted by the face of splendor. And he is capable of making simple observations and imbuing them with meaning. Here is Beneath the Rotunda in full:Worship time, all the townBells echo.I see that the people are slowTo respond to the bells.Rain and its rotundaOf majesty does not phase them.Worship time, all the townBells echo.The rain now ceases its orotundPatterns of sobriety.With the chaste interruption, the bellsResound with pathetic clarity:The people wince and theBells remind them--But the people, in clumsy hesitation,Walk toward the rainclouds, lost in meditation.Despite the orotund (which appears more than once in this book) majesty (again, multiple occurrences), this poem finishes beautifully.Another simple but lovely poem is Four Boys:Across a damp valley to the canebrake stalksThere lies a down-pathway where an old man walks,Followed closely byA boy, a boy and a boy.Not a word is spokenLest the trance be brokenThat exists between the fourWalking home with the sky,With the memories of day,With a sunset that envelops the four.And somewhere a lightBurns into the nightTo welcome the wanderers home--Home from a damp valley,Home from a down-pathway,Home are the wanderers home:An old man followed closely byA boy, a boy and a boy.Some wonderful poetic choices are made in this poem, particularly in terms of repetition. They walk home with the sky not under it.I like both of these poems provided in full here more the more I look at them and despite their flaws. However, there are 72 pages to this book and most of them are committing the crimes mentioned above.