impolite lines

Sarah B. Boyle

Sarah B. Boyle is a poet.

happy holidays

Christmas is often deadly in the Boyle house. I do homemade gifts. Because I am cheap. And homemaker-ish. And love baking. And have a CSA that gives us too much produce, produce that can only be utilized via putting up in pretty little jars. Also, we have family living in Rhode Island, so I have to have all that stuff put together--including the pretty labels--by the mailing deadline and not Christmas Day. Every year that mailing deadline springs itself on me and I have apple butter still to make and cakes to bake (and freeze) and cinnamon-vanilla sunflower seed butter to vitamix. 

So, in lieu of spending an evening doing all those chores, I wrote a poem for Be About It Zine's Holidaze Poem Swap. Here is the poem I got from Catch Business on my Tumblr. Here is my poem, swapped onto Carmen Brady's Tumblr. And here, too, is the poem, with its original stanza breaks.

On Beauty

What is a beautiful boy?
A beautiful face
A beautiful living plant
A beautiful wild rose
over and over acts
an ache in the hand
The hand then
senses ghostly teeth and gums

God is unceasing
There will eventually be
You submit
to a comet
to gravity
to a highly instrumental goal
You are 
on your knees

Fragility is one
kind of error
Men horses poems
are others
Repeatedly the
moment comes
Your arrival
sounds like greenness
A hymn
that is life-affirming

The simplest
translation of
into manuscript
can be carried out by
a crowd of people
Contagion causes
a wish to
remain forever
in the path of beauty

The hand
prompts the mind
to reside in tiny
heart-shaped cups
Behold his body
his feathers
his huddle
his violent trembling

Read the source lecture--the poem's an erasure--On Beauty and Being Just by Elaine Scarry (pdf).