The Green in the Human

A Review of Dominik Parisien’s In His Eighty-Second Year in Stone Telling issue 7, March 2012 (
By Derek Newman-Stille

In his poem “In His Eighty-Second Year”, Parisien plays with the senses, constructing each stanza around a sensory experience. He intertwines the human experience with the vegetative, creating the human as a form of scarecrow or green man living in the interspace between the floral and the faunal.

His poem is an exploration of the persistence of memory through change, and of age as a process of both decay and rebirth, transforming the body into perpetual new growth “fill my mouth with dirt, my veins with sap, my bones with seeds”. But, even in transformation, there is the memory of guilt, the weeping for a life lost.

You can explore this poem online at

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