Fred Marchant views the inexplicable and gives us the air it breathed in his poems in Said Not Said. I have been looking at this book, reading it, studying with Marchant, and looking at it again for the past three years. Most of that time I worked as a graveyard-shift custodian cleaning university buildings. Now, I live at my parents’ and take care of the both of them during the days of the pandemic. What Marchant sees in his life is revealed in this book. He sees what is not fair. He sees reality but events he cannot control. Here we are in 2020: sitting ducks. Marchant’s poems get into the feeling of this but also access the profound stability of peace and understanding. In “Fennel” he writes:
At the end maybe you were thinking
of Whitman and his claim that dying
was luckier than we had supposed.
Or not. Or not. Here is the bee . . .
Marchant shows us that nature with a capital N intercedes, maybe not to change the course of events he witnesses, but to carry an event to another place, a different emotion. [Read more…] about Witness. Vulnerable. Mystery.