Poems For My TV Heroines
In honor of Veronica Mars becoming a movie, I’ve curated a poem for each of my all-time favorite TV ladies.
Connie Britton as Tami Taylor, Friday Night Lights
For the great, epic love of Tami & Coach:
From 25TH Anniversary by Linda Pastan
…But here we are
like the married couple
from Cerveteri who smile
from their 6th century sarcophagus
as if they are giving a party.
How young we were in Rome, buying
their portraits on postcards,
thinking that we too
were entangled already
beyond amputation, beyond
even death, as we are
as we are now.
Kate Walsh as Addison Montgomery, Private Practice
For the troubled line of love/life/spiritual questioning Addison goes down on this cry-your-eyes-out, touch-your-soul series:
From A Primitive Like an Orb by Wallace Stevens
The essential poem at the centre of things,
The arias that spiritual fiddlings make,
Have gorged the cast-iron of our lives with good
And the cast-iron of our works. But it is, dear sirs,
A difficult apperception, this gorging good,
Fetched by such slick-eyed nymphs, this essential gold,
This fortune’s finding, disposed and re-disposed
By such slight genii in such pale air…
Katie Holmes as Joey Potter, Dawson’s Creek
From Envoi by Carl Phillips
…I dragged what boats I could
to the shore and piled them severally in a tree-
less space, and lit a fire that didn’t take
at first—the wood was wet—and then, helped by
the wind, became a blaze so high the sea
itself, along with the bodies in it, seemed
to burn. I watched as each boat fell to flame:
Vincent and Matthew and, last, what bore your name.
Claire Danes as Carrie Mathison, Homeland
For trying to stay afloat in a sea of terrorism and mental illness:
From The Attic by Cynthia Huntington
I seem to remain, somehow, myself,
to remain at least something, at a loss
to know how much can be taken from me
and leave me only changed, not ruined,
alert in an emptiness so alive
I recognized it as my life. What would be left,
the shape of it then, this life? I said some beauty,
or radiance, an endless space I fall into
or am taken up by, a brightness that holds me,
gathers light in the center of empty space,
like a vision of the life I have not lived.
Sarah Jessica Parker as Carrie Bradshaw, Sex in the City
Chicken Little by Eliza Griswold:
I’m through! I’m through!
she says and resays.
The years pass.
Her feathers gray.
The sky falls.
For being smart, snarky, and young:
From Prodigal by Bob Hicok
…attack the world with your ambition,
invent wonder plasmas,
become an artist of the provocative gesture,
the suggestive nod, you could leave
wanting the world and return
carrying it, a noisy bundle
of steam and libido, a ball of fire
balanced on your tongue…