Vaudeville in the Dark: Poems
Vaudeville in the Dark is R. M. Ryan’s dance to the music of our times, his search for salvation in poetry. In writing up our minor moments, he reckons to find “peace beneath the unsteady light / where we give ourselves to the world / as we circle in and out of the dark.” Sometimes funny, sometimes somber, the world of Vaudeville in the Dark ranges from an elegy on the death of a miner in Sago, West Virginia, to a meditation on the life of Rembrandt. Tony the Tiger, Glenn Gould, Chaucer---each has a moment as Ryan makes his way across the stage of our lives. He creates a world both frightening and funny as we—songsters all—long for a “heart dissolved in melody.”
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accordionist afternoon afterthoughts astronomical clock beer Bel Air Beowulf beside my grandfather’s breath c’est moi calling and calling cancer chicken running chicory clouds covered with pigeon dance dead died dragon fly earth Edith Piaf Eurydice everything everywhere father fish Floating Heart frozen girls Glenn Gould Plays gone Goose Island guess guidebook half in darkness half in light he’s head headless chicken heavens Henrietta Lacks holding husk I’ve indigo night inside intentionally left blank Jaguar kisses last shape possible laughter lavender live looking Lumina meant mice miner’s Monet at Sea Monet laughing Moods For Moderns night in Paris numbers Objets du Monde Oh no oh Plays the Variations Poems To Polka remember rising River rubbed Rue Anemone Seelen shit singing sliver smell someone someone’s souls spinning stars sunlight Tammy Smith tell there’s thought three-star Trojan trying turn vaudeville walked who’s wind window words yell