Book #5: Incidents of Travel in Poetry by Frank Lima


I am currently running a study on Frank Lima and have been completely engrossed in his writing over the last few weeks. I got a copy of this from City Lights in the mail a week ago and have been spending lots of time thumbing through it and becoming acquainted.

Frank Lima is not a well known poet but he is very awesome. He had a terribly difficult upbringing but poetry really worked to help him express himself. I was in NYC last week for a tribute to Lima, which was very touching.

Lima was a professional chef as well as a writer, so I am now digging into his writing to find bits of his love of food in there as well. It has been a joy, and one that I will be working on until the end of April when my study ends.

This book, Incidents of Travel in Poetry, came out in January this year and is a really great compilation of his work. There’s some good biographical information in the beginning, too. I strongly recommend checking him out if you are into the NY School poets at all.

Inspired by Gina’s quotes from her latest book, here are a few lines from Lima that I really enjoy:

“These are questions I ask myself when the sugar dissolves in my Coffee”

“Our hearts teach us how to fly with wings of pain.”

“I often wonder why my life has been this way. It would have been much different if I were born without a body, only a burlap bag filled with Autumn leaves, with a very small head on top. None of this would have Happened, just difficulty breathing resulting from chronic hay fever. NASA would have collected prayers from schoolchildren all over America And astronauts would have taken Me up into outer space So the angels coule hear me better.”

“Only the smoke of old age will remember but never taste what we did.”

I’ll add some in the comments as I come around to them 🙂

4 comments on “Book #5: Incidents of Travel in Poetry by Frank Lima”

  1. Wow, Alison this is awesome! Thank you so much for sharing these lines. I really want to read more about Frank Lima, and I think I will put this book on my list to sneak in somewhere. There’s so much about his poetry that just takes my breath away–so filled with honest thought. And thank you for all the work you are doing in the discussion group. I am going to carve out more time to spend there.


    1. Hey Nadia, I am glad you’re enjoying Lima. I think he’s very special, his honesty being raw and just right there!

      I will post some more lines once I have a think. The last week of the study we will go through this text so if you can get your hands on it that would be awesome! I posted a PDF of the first many pages on the forum already so you can use that as well.

      Liked by 1 person

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