Defining Bucolics

I have had questions about some of my most recent poetry. One in particular which I chose to write without any punctuation at all, except for capitalizing one word, “Kid.” My explanation for this is Maurice ManningBucolics

This is one of my absolute favorite books of poetry that I have read so far. The reason, the entire book is composed of seventy short poems which slowly spiral into one another around a central character “Boss.” This is not a book of astropoetry, but pastoral. Manning is such an inspiration to me. Punctuation is almost always necessary to achieve clarity and a specific, let’s say, “flow” that moves the poem forward. Even without punctuation Manning somehow brings the reader through this journey of 70 pastoral poems to create an overall world of images and actions inspiring a story like non-other I have found in a book of poetry.

I doubt I will ever attempt to fully follow Manning’s topic of poetry, but his style, I would be honored to achieve.

I encourage everyone to read this amazing book of poetry, especially if you have never read poetry before. And now, here’s a poem from the amazon preview for you to see. This is actually my absolute favorite in the book. Enjoy!

did you ever have a nickname Boss
a favorite color ever walk around
in a circle for the fun of it do you
snap your fingers hold your breath
do you put things in your pocket
do you notch a stick for every sparrow
is everything a little game to you Boss
a little peekaboo a ring around
the rosy Boss we all fall down that’s
the funny part when it happens
do you keep a straight face or do
you laugh what’s it like to always know
the answer never have to guess when
you rest do you ever fall asleep

~ Maurice Manning

These pieces are copyright to me. Please do not reproduce anything posted by me without my express permission. Email me at ameejhennig (at) gmail (dot) com to request permission. Thank you.

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