Monday, February 2, 2009

Bud Caywood, October 16, 2008

It doesn’t pay to be a poet in the world today. I’m not sure that it ever did. There is still interest in poetry, but it seems the interest is more in writing poetry than in reading it, or, that even greater rarity, buying it. Faced with this reality, most of those who continue to pursue poetic expression after realizing the lack of financial reward for doing so, retreat to the halls of colleges and universities where they are at least encouraged and periodically rewarded, usually in the form of time, for publication.
There remains, however, a substantial number of impressive poets who somehow find the willpower and the means to continue developing their poetic talents outside the relative security of academia. Charles Bukowski comes to mind. And I recently discovered another such poet from my birth-town of Greenwood, SC: D.B. Cox. In Catawba County, the most recognized example of this sort of “grassroots” poet is Bud Caywood.
Caywood is the Staff Designer for La-Z-Boy Furniture and a freelance artist and writer. He has been creating art and poetry for more than thirty years and is preparing to publish his 12th collection of poetry: The Café Terrace at Night. Previous editions have included The Feather Collector, North Toward Noon, and Tomato.
Caywood has been an active fixture in the Catawba County arts and poetry community for years. In 2001, he began the original local poetry reading series called “The Writer’s Stage.” And in 2005, he founded an online writer’s group called e-Poets Society.
I am honored to print his poem, “The Rock,” which was originally published in his collection The River.

The Rock

That glimmer is not the moon rising from the river,
or fireflies tumbling out of the shadows,
but flickering mica slivers from a pyramid shapes spike

ripping through the river’s collar–a moving aqueduct
of silky sand splintered with billions of silvery specs;
its metallic current shimmering like a shattered mirror.

This three-mile cascade is an even flowing fallow of
nothing but water and rocks, an esophagus to heaven
with erratic currents tearing the ribs from each bank,

churning invisibly in a swirling spoke of cold drifts,
waiting for rain to rise up its belly around the rock
that shivers like mercury even in the dead of night.

It takes only several minutes, but you trace the flow,
the torrent trail of liquid sand, a tip slightly left, and then
right into the falls and out through a chute, then finally

down through the bruised gorge in long loping waves,
under each drooping tree whirring and swaying in a
hovering presence–the rock disappears quietly behind.

No comments:

Post a Comment