New release – On Love: a poem sequence

On Love: a poem sequence

http://www.amazon.com/On-Love-a-poem-sequence-Jill-Chan/dp/1463721439/

64 pages

My new collection of poetry is a sequence on love–the many sides of romance, the depths of longing, and other subtleties in between.

“There was this sound
then nothing after;
a quickness
then what quickened you;
a style then
how we stood aside
like a generous condemnation,
like delight
at something gone,
never to be confused
again with coming.”

free digital edition


Disappearance

There’s nothing deaf
about not listening,
about taking other people’s words,
and wasting their presence
like you own them.
They just disappear.
Everything to be heard
for the last time.
A voice then is known
for the way it leaves—
action dissolves to memory
if not picked up
like some afternoon shadow.
If suddenly without words,
I come to you.

from These Hands Are Not Ours (ESAW, 2009)


from On Love: a poem sequence

1

There was this sound
then nothing after;
a quickness
then what quickened you;
a style then
how we stood aside
like a generous condemnation,
like delight
at something gone,
never to be confused
again with coming.

Then there was this ache
and nowhere you’d rather be.

There was this murmur
and no heart
but a crowd of beats
and sorrow.

Where does it lead?
Where does ache follow
but where we couldn’t
satisfy?
And then you denounce
and I remove your pronouncements
like love.
How silent love is,
shaking us off.
We are tempted
and near;
we are slow
and desired.
What can happen in a day
but more day.
More heart to melt
the cold
like you could be
drowning.
And satisfaction
is set aside.
We are compassionate,
done with keeping time,
full of beauty
nearly loved.


Review of “On Love: a poem sequence”

Excerpt from Jack Hughes’ review of my latest book On Love: a poem sequence:

 

Jill is a practitioner of the meditative lyric. One thing she is able to do is work with the abstract in the poem as if it was an imagery. Her poems can be completely abstract, in the sense of, devoid of any but the most minimal image, nothing more than sunlight — and this has its own richness in this sense in which the concepts and conceptions are given leave to live; a withdrawal of sensory imagery allows them to have a reality.

“We are everywhere

We want to be in love.

A light through the trees.”

Somehow the natural effacement, modesty of her tone, allows her to use these words without it having the sound of a sweeping statement. The otherwise grand inclusiveness of the pronoun ‘we,’ the capacious enclosure of ‘everywhere,’ remains somehow nicely inner and individual — her poems have the sounds of quiet inner individual meditative thinking. Meaning is controlled in the poems because meaning is only one of the things they pursue, or are built of; they also have soft rhythms, musical values, and values of how the images balance against the abstractions.