As with another in our "Great Poems of Our Time" series, "How Aimée remembers Jaguar", Frank's poem was posted on The Alsop Review's Gazebo workshop before being housecleaned away. Unlike Erin Hopson, who vanished while completing her college degree, this time only the poem dropped out of sight. Frank Matagrano has remained a presence on Gazebo, Eratosphere and elsewhere.
Auditing The Heart (by Frank Matagrano) from Earl Gray on Vimeo.
Like our #1 poem, Margaret Ann Griffiths' "Studying Savonarola", "Auditing the Heart" is about romance, distance and time. It treats the latter theme even better than Maz's masterpiece. Like "Savonarola", "Auditing the Heart" starts very slowly. Perhaps too slowly. It isn't clear what the first three couplets add beyond a missed opportunity to create more ambiguity by using "was" rather than "meant" in S3-L1.
In terms of sounds and rhythms, "Auditing the Heart" is not the masterpiece that "Studying Savonarola" and "Beans" are but S4 to S6, inclusive, constitute a clinic on remarkable linebreaks. Teachers and students: take note!
Auditing the Heart - Frank Matagrano
One mother who owned
the sea, one father who walked
on water, and in a row boat,
one brother who believed
marriage meant becoming
the roof over a woman's head.
A room for the night with a view
of the water, the moon a quarter
less than it should have been,
the shape of my wife drawn
into the empty bed one memory
at a time. There were too many
stars to count, a registry
of old gifts and receipts strewn
across the sky, a mess
of things that died getting here.
- "Studying Savonarola" by Margaret A. Griffiths
- "Beans" by D. P. Kristalo
- "Antiblurb" by A. E. Stallings
- "How Aimée remembers Jaguar" by Eric Hopson
- "There Are Sunflowers in Italy" by Didi Menendez
- "Auditing the Heart" by Frank Matagrano