Poem: “Elliptical” by Harryette Mullen

0 Posted by - February 27, 2018 - History, LATEST POSTS, Poems

Harryette Mullen is Professor of English at University of California, Los Angeles. She is also an American poet, short story writer, and literary scholar.

Mullen was born in Florence, Alabama, grew up in Fort Worth, Texas, graduated from the University of Texas at Austin and attended graduate school at the University of California, Santa Cruz. As of 2008, she lives in Los Angeles, California. Mullen’s most recent work is Urban Tumbleweed: Notes from a Tanka Diary.

Mullen began to write poetry as a college student in a multicultural community of writers, artists, musicians, and dancers in Austin, Texas.

She was a finalist for a National Book Award, National Book Critics Circle Award, and Los Angeles Times Book Prize. She received a PEN/Beyond Margins Award for her Recyclopedia (2006). She is also credited for rediscovering the novel Oreo, published in 1974 by Fran Ross. Mullen won the fourth annual Jackson Poetry Prize from Poets & Writers in 2010.

She appears in the documentary film, The Black Candle, directed by M.K. Asante, Jr. and narrated by Maya Angelou.

Elliptical

By Harryette Mullen

They just can’t seem to . . . They should try harder to . . . They ought to be more . . . We all wish they weren’t so . . . They never . . . They always . . . Sometimes they . . . Once in a while they . . . However it is obvious that they . . . Their overall tendency has been . . . The consequences of which have been . . . They don’t appear to understand that . . . If only they would make an effort to . . . But we know how difficult it is for them to . . . Many of them remain unaware of . . . Some who should know better simply refuse to . . . Of course, their perspective has been limited by . . . On the other hand, they obviously feel entitled to . . . Certainly we can’t forget that they . . . Nor can it be denied that they . . . We know that this has had an enormous impact on their . . . Nevertheless their behavior strikes us as . . . Our interactions unfortunately have been . . .

 

source:

https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/51632/elliptical

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