“Children, I said to her. For the first little while, they not exactly human, you don't find?”
Nalo Hopkinson

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Chris Abani's Positive Influence.

"Hands Washing Water"

Even in the falling
a train breaks for the light.
The tunnel the darkness-never

sweeter. The body is not
real. Yet living.
This living body.

There is a child. The blessed
coolness of water.
And hands

Chris Abani

Chris Abani is an educated professional poet who uses the tools of poetry writing with artful intimacy.  I am not a poet and so I am struggling to understand this poem and the book of the same name.

The poet or narrator of "Hands Washing Water" is saying that the human body is as good and a blessing to water as water is to the human body which is made mostly of water.  Human flesh and water are a part of one another. The body is as valuable of the rest of the creation.

Free Verse is used because it allows the poet a somewhat less constrained, more malleable mode of poetic expression.

This book of poetry by Abani is important because most of us have been taught that our flesh is sinful and we don't give its creator enough credit for imagining and constructing wonderful hands or the other  parts of the body.  Neither do most of us appreciate the true beauty and utility of our bodies.  At least I haven't, but this poem made me start thinking all the different sizes, shapes. and colors of human flesh.  All of that has been right in front of these eyes and I never saw it.  Neither can I see the other things this book of poetry is saying. 

That's it folks.  I am currently studying and hope to understand a bit more of the next poet's poetry, Ruth Forman.

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