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Inspecting Nostalgia is a new collection of poetry by R. Kolewe. This, his second collection, brings together found text and fragments of various writers’ work with scraps from his own journals. Heartbreak is tempered with Jacques Derrida’s essay on Immanuel Kant to create almost-sonnets and many tercets, and marginal notes brim with desire and memory to test the limits of the age-old matter of the lyric poem.
In this third week of National Poetry Month 2017, and in advance of Kolewe’s Toronto launch on May 8, please enjoy two poems from the collection. “Temporal” comes from pages 4–5, and “The result is not simple” from page 17 of Inspecting Nostalgia.
I want to ask you then
true grace against false beginning
like rain the simplest last night’s
message all over again.
The memory of a joy is not joyous
or flame or open, I know.
It moves from hand to hand, mine, yours
like a pencil
as you drew
your enthusiastic independent ecstasy,
lines I couldn’t follow.
Ask how after all this I can want
and I do, toward the above
of the future which is pure quiet
which I am not yet.
Your name beginning and ending now
voluntary not a word of time or weather.
The choice to forget perhaps
knowing that I have forgotten, knowing
this is not called upon to be sincere.
The result is not simple
The rain woke me I wanted it to be
you, could hear your voice or footsteps
or memory. 5:15 a.m. For a long time
I got up early, time being only
adds to itself, entropy, geometry, margin,
or the book at my bedside and
always leaving the window open.
In alphabetical order.
Careless desolation simply.
I should turn back to tell it right
repeating and not repeating astonishment.
Order your copy of Inspecting Nostalgia today for $18.95.