Tuesday, September 20, 2011

“The Sun is Always Shining”

[I love how Nancy Krygowski’s poem about mortality & redemption & childhood sunburn spins off a poem by Frank O’Hara—itself a spin-off from a poem by Mayakovsky—& becames something rich, strange & wonderful in itself—enjoy!]
The Sun is Always Shining

The sun is always shining, saying just try to be unhappy
like how it once talked to Frank O’Hara on Fire Island, who also wrote about the sun
but he wrote about everything, and I like writing
about death

so I’m trying to be weepy, somber, even petulant would do
but the sun, stupid ass sun, keeps shining  and I’m happy, so happy
 I force myself to remember how once I got
sunburned, second-degree sunburn—I was 13, at the beach with family—
how could they have not told me I needed sunscreen?

I try to get angry at my parents, or sad—they’re both dead now—
but  the sun, damn sun, reminds me how I peeled twice
and as my skin came off in big blank pages
I thought of the awful names kids called me—Pollock and fat ass—and wished
those days would go away

so I rolled up the names into little skin balls,  flicked them into room corners
out car windows, between my mean brother’s sheets
and guess what? 

the sun, that great forgiver, giant prayer, made me pure again

Nancy Krygowski
© 2011


  1. Gosh - there is an ocean of depth there. Images within images, meaning within meaning.

  2. Hi Alan: Agreed! Thanks for stopping by & commenting on Nancy's poem!


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