Tuesday, October 21, 2008

The Dog and the Book

Here's our new dog, J. Alfred Prufrock, whom we recently rescued from the pound:



He's so prim and proper-looking that we felt he needed an English butler's sobriquet, so we settled on the famous character of T. S. Eliot's poem, "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" (one of the greatest poems in the language).

J. weighs all of fifteen pounds and is about 15" at the shoulder, a smallish dog. But he overcomes his height in the tall grass, where he likes to chase deer, by jumping in the air with his forelegs held back high above to see. He looks just like a deer when he runs; he literally prances. He lives for gophers and cats. I think his breed must have been meant to be ratters, or rodent police, as he likes to tear up small objects and digs industriously for gophers only to smell disappointment. I wonder what that smells like to a dog.

According to my research, the sheba inu, of which he is certainly a mix, dates back to the 4th century B.C. in Japan, and the breed was rescued by interbreeding three lines after WWII. It was originally raised to flush birds and perhaps hunt wild boar. J. shows an intense interest in birds and likes to chase cabbage moths, sometimes successfully pawing them to ground.

The breed is known to be dignified, bold, energetic and very clean. To see how much J. resembles a purebred, here's a picture of a purebred shiba:



I know there are cat people and dog people and people like my daughter, Keturah, who despise all furred things and prefers reptiles and amphibians. More discussion of our dog would be beyond the scope of my usual narrative. Let me say simply that he's a wonderful dog and I love him. He's stubborn but a pinch collar had him heeling so well I replaced it with a regular collar. He has definitely enlarged my happiness.

My hardback collection, "Unexpected Light" (new title due to the publisher), is slated for release 1/15/09. I hope to arrange a release party. Any close to Northern California should write me for an invite. It will be priced somewhere between $15 and $20, a reasonable amount for a perfect bound hardback with a jacket. I hope everyone who reads this blog will buy one, unless I've spoiled you by giving my poetry away for free. Even so, to have a nice volume in your hand and read a poet at leisure is a different kind of pleasure.

I'm excited about arranging readings and obtaining reviews from magazine editors who have published me. I hope to saturate the litnet with my ubiquitous omnipresence even more so than formerly. I won't go so far as spam or robocalls, but I do intend to do whatever it takes to make the book a success. And if it is not, well, it's only poetry.


2 Kilobunnies,

CE

6 comments:

  1. You should plan a reading tour. All the venues from where you are down to LA and San Diego. Radio & POD Cast interviews, too. Subraman, Dancing Bear's show, Foley, etc.

    Record a CD's worth (15) and burn a bunch (with nice graphics for the label) to be included as a nudge for prospective buyers. None poet buyers.

    -blue

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  2. Congrats on the book, and the dog! He's beautiful. Dogs are such happy, distracting companions.

    Hang in there with the pills and the moods.

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  3. Beau, you pack a lot of advice in a short burst, but I intend to do as you say. About the CD: I didn't understand your last comment--not for poetry buyers?

    Vee, welcome to my wacky world. Tell all your crazy friends to visit.

    CE

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  4. I covet your dog.

    There's a woman that lives in one of the townhouses next do my apartment building and every morning and every night, she takes what I had deemed as the perfect sized dog for a walk--and her dog looks just like Pru.

    God bless you for rescuing a dog. There are far too many dogs and cats and puppies and kittens in the shelters in need of a good home. Here's one dog that made it out.

    I'm still worried about your cats. They're still hanging out outside?

    Oh, I covet your dog. Plus, you gave him the perfect name. My father always wanted a Russian Blue cat so he could name it Pushkin. I thin he would've liked your dog, and your dog's name.

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  5. My last comment should have been longer. The CDs you burn should be offered to buyers who DO NOT write poetry. Poets who buy the book get your thanks, non-poets who buy the book get a CD of you reading to go with it. Sorry I was less than lucid with my last 3 words, it happens all the time now that I'm over 60.

    -blue

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  6. LKD--thanks for the kind words and connection to your father. We sometimes hand carry the cats to bed at night when J. Alfred is sleeping. Best we can do. He breaks command just to chase them and is rudely crated afterwards.

    Beau, thanks for the clarification. Your treatment of "Where Are the Frogs" has drawn rave reviews from all my friends and litfriends.

    CE

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Unexpected Light

Unexpected Light
Selected Poems and Love Poems 1998-2008 ON SALE NOW!