Ira Sadoff

The House of Wittgenstein
May 12, 2013 Sadoff Ira

The House of Wittgenstein

The limits of my language mean the limits of my world.



He never saw the malls of Petaluma, nor met the amazing cricketeer Montezuma. He never heard a laugh track. We’d like to see him stroke a cat wrapped in a kaftan. Let him find a mechanic for our mufflers. Or raise sandbags in Port-au-Prince for hours.

Only once did he eat a plantain and in his notebook describe the process as sloshing through the Everglades.

Otherwise he was a word hotel. His best friend was a hut in Norway.

Maybe he was smart enough for a table of twelve. He could play all twelve parts.

What’s to be done with a man who lives in his head? Ira, my friend, are you listening?

Ira Sadoff’s the author of seven collections of poetry, most recently TRUE FAITH (BOA Editions, 2012) and the re-issued PALM READING IN WINTER (Carnegie-Mellon). He’s published a novel, UNCOUPLING, THE IRA SADOFF READER, and HISTORY MATTERS (U.of Iowa Press) a critical book on poetry and culture. He’s been widely anthologized and awarded grants from the Guggenheim Fellowship and the NEA. He has new work appearing in THE NEW YORKER, APR, and the Academy of American Poets’ Poem a Day Series. He lives in a converted barn in upstate New York.