Paul Maliszewski Recommends...


“A friend sent me a link to this video of several poets reciting their work at the White House. I’d been meaning to look for it myself, and watch it, but I haven’t yet. I haven’t had a chance. It’s a long story why, but basically it seems like whenever I get a link to some video from a friend, my headphones are downstairs, and my child has just gone to sleep. His room, you see, is right at the top of the stairs, and the floorboards squeak in ways that my wife and I still can’t always predict or anticipate, even after three years of trying. But anyway, in the still photo for this video, in that picture one sees before one clicks “play,” the president is standing at a lectern about to speak. In the background, off to the side a bit, a band of daylight peeks through the drapes. It’s a brilliant stripe, all blues and greens and bright whites. In fact, when I started to look, I noticed two more bands of daylight, much thinner than the first, more like threads, really, a mere pixel’s width perhaps. Someone must not have drawn the curtains all the way. And someone else didn’t notice. Many someones, no doubt. What can I say, except that I like those bands of daylight? The oversight, the tiny imperfection, they seem to me immediately and achingly human.”
Paul Maliszewski, author of Prayer and Parable (Fence Books, 2011)