Each day through February 1st, our spring deadline for admission, we’ll be taking a look at the faculty members of UCR Palm Desert — you’ll see them talking, you’ll read their work, you may even see them play a musical instrument or two. Today, sit down and read four poems from poetry professor Matthew Zapruder, including “Schwinn”, from our friends at the Poetry Foundation:
I hate the phrase “inner life.” My attic hurts,and I’d like to quit the committeefor naming tornadoes. Do you rememberhow easy and sad it was to be youngand defined by our bicycles? My firstwas yellow, and though it was no BlackPhantom or Sting-Ray but merely a VarsityI loved the afternoon it was suddenly gone,chasing its apian flash through the neighborhoodswith my father in vain. Like being a nuclearfamily in a television show totally unaffectedby a distant war. Then we returnedto the green living room to watch the No Nameshold our Over the Hill Gang underthe monotinted chromatic defeated SuperBowl waters. 1973, year of the Black Flycaught in my Jell-O. Year of the Suffrage Buildingon K Street NW where a few minor law firmsmingle proudly with the Union of Butchersand Meat Cutters. A black handalready visits my father in sleep, movingup his spine to touch his amygdala. I willnever know a single thing anyone feels,just how they say it, which is why I am standinghere exactly, covered in shame and lightning,doing what I’m supposed to do.