Arts+Culture

Arts+Culture

We Are the Eighth Day, © Melanie Weidner

Film

Room at the inn

In 1994 Paul Rusesabagina, a hotel manager in Kigali, Rwanda, risked his life to help save more than 1,200 men, women and children from the ethnic cleansing that wiped out nearly 1 million Rwandans in 100 days. Through this true story Hotel Rwanda tells the story of the genocide in Rwanda.
Poetry

Peter

O Christ,

you know better than any
what it is to taste death
through love,
to feel the dull pulsing, side-pinned,

spiky memories stitching into your brain.
When water from under your heart
bathed the world,
you irrigated too the planted cross,
that it might take root, and, in us,

never die.

Yet I resist its rooting in,
and strive to strip it bare in me,
when it is I who should be naked
and ashamed.
I obviously have not died enough.

So: overturn me,
stretch me on your frame,
and, for your name, teach me
the inverse,

that I might know love through death.











Film

Looking for love

Purporting to deliver the straight goods on modern sexual interactions, Closer is glossier than last summer’s similarly themed We Don’t Live Here Anymore, and it has a more impressive pedigree—an award-winning director (Mike Nichols), a highly acclaimed British stage play (by Patrick Marber) for its source, and a glamorous cast: Julia Roberts, Clive Owen, Jude Law and Natalie Portman
Film

Escaping

It is hard to be moved anymore by films about concentration camps. The grainy images of scarecrow figures; maniacal guards firing pistols on a whim; parents dragged away while children stare—Hollywood has managed to turn such horrors into stock visuals. It has made the unspeakable not only speakable, but almost rote.
Poetry

Weather report

The snow in North Dakota asks a question
with no question mark, no capital letter,
to indicate where it begins and ends
or what lies in the middle, for that matter.
The question is white and drifts above the cab
of the snowplow while in its orange light
people lean into the wind along the curb,
digging out cars that vanish in the night.

At home their dogs are silent, hearing no sound.
The cattle huddle and freeze, and buffalo
crossing the buried fence, free now to roam,
stand silver and stiff as nickels in the dawn—
eyes frozen wide and blank as if they tried
to comprehend the question while they died.