Notes

What follows is mostly recognition of what I’ve borrowed or outright stolen. All etymologies are from the Oxford English Dictionary.


40:57:54 N / 76:54:35 W

“Emerson Susquehanna”: The title of each section is a portion of a sentence taken from Emerson in His Journals, ed. Joel Porte (Harvard University Press, 1982).

“To Be Two”: The title is taken from a book of the same name by Luce Irigaray (Routledge, 2001); the image of the veil between lovers is also hers. A few phrases and some examples of language games concerning certainty are taken directly from Ludwig Wittgenstein’s On Certainty (Harper & Row, 1972).

“As If from Letters of Surveyor Samuel Maclay”: The poem borrows directly from Maclay’s Journal (Wennawoods, 1999), which he wrote while he was surveying the west branch of the Susquehanna, near Lewisburg (which was then Derrstown) in central Pennsylvania.


42:53:6 N / 71:57:17 W

The “white birch” series responds to Gennady Aygi’s poem “Birch at Noon,” from Child-and-Rose (New Directions, 2003).

“Embodiment” responds to Brenda Hillman’s assertion, in “First Tractate” from Death Tractates (Wesleyan University Press, 1992), that “The soul got to choose. Nothing else / got to but the soul / got to choose.”

-83-

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Sight Map: Poems
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • 40:57:54 N 76:54:35 W 1
  • Emerson Susquehanna 3
  • To Be Two 10
  • Lent Prayer 16
  • As If from Letters of Surveyor Samuel Maclay (Spring, 1790) 19
  • To Take the House out of Doors 24
  • 42:53:6 N 71:57:17 W 27
  • Embodiment (White Birch) 29
  • Morphology (Field Guide to the Ferns) 30
  • Theory of Trees (White Birch) 38
  • Spirit Photograph (White Birch) 40
  • The Word from His Mouth, It Is Perfect 42
  • Long after Hopkins 44
  • Pilgrim 47
  • The Ravine a Canoe 49
  • Errant 50
  • A Type of Spine 51
  • Ash, Birch, Beech, Pine 52
  • Errant - Reply 53
  • As Being Is to Begin 54
  • West to Dust 55
  • To Drag about, to Torment, to Wallow 56
  • Devotion 57
  • 37:48:9 N 122:15:4 W 59
  • Sanctuary, Its Root Sanctus (Lake Merritt) 61
  • Thoreau Etude (Lake Merritt) 67
  • Genius Loci (Oakland) 69
  • Abandoned Palinode for the Twenty Suitors of June (18th & Sanchez) 76
  • An Essay to End Pleasure 80
  • Notes 83
  • Acknowledgments 85
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