June 29th, 2007

head shot

Poetry Friday -- Emits Showers of Sparks

My good ol' bud W. Joe Hoppe is a poet and teacher here in Austin, remarkable for all sorts of reasons, including his lovin' dad energy, his amazing full-back tattoo, his wise and talented wife, and his buddist-midwestern-hotrod-classics sensibility.

I could think of no better way to kick off the extended Fourth of July holiday than with this poem from one of his early chapbooks. His newest book is Galvanized. You should get it.

It'd be a Happy Ending
 -- W. Joe Hoppe, 8/30/92

You can put my ashes
   in a fireworks rocket
I'm sure my broke down chemical composition
   could make some kind of contribution
          there's carbon in gunpowder
          my remains might have
   some kind of propulsive possibilities
But truly
   what I'd want
      for what's left
   is to be one of those flaming embers
          part of a sparks shower
          trailing across the firmament
   or one bright green yellow red blue white
                            dot
   bursting and tumbling through the night sky
Even just a part of something
          a circle
          or a lop-sided heart
      an angel flaring up
      some celestial gift drifting down
   while people lift their eyes
      and ohhhh
   as small planes buzz around
      through the sulfur scented brimstone
          clouds thinning out
             through the dark