Monday, May 26, 2014

my poems are not poems and the arrival of spring

Quoted in a conversation between Edward Hirsch and Annie Finch on Poetry Foundation:

The 18th-century Zen monk Ryokan:

Who says my poems are poems?
My poems are not poems.
When you know that my poems are not poems,
Then we can speak of poetry.

At the risk of sounding fancy, I can say that this is exactly how I feel about the poems that are not poems in my book Asking.

Well. It rained last night, and this morning, sitting at my desk, the sound of bird song is lovely. The view from the window over my desk - green leaves and apple blossoms. On the weekend, I had Chloe hold a jar of our mock plum blossoms.

What could be more poetic than spring rain and blossoms? I hope we are never through writing about them. There is much yet to say, I think, about the arrival of spring in this mad world of ours.


  1. i love this post! the wisdom of ryokan . . . and . . . the beauty of the flowers . . . and
    not the least of which are chloe's beautiful hands.
    i have ordered from my b and n a copy of asking. looking forward to it!

    just an odd thought here... from a mom. well. a stepmom. but i never thought of myself as step. she was two when i met her and i fell for her immediately. so these are fellow mother words . . .
    please pass on to chloe that she is beautiful. i'm sure you tell her that. but at that age it's nice to know that others think so too.
    it's an unusual beauty. it's ethereal. and quirky. and totally unique to chloe.
    sometimes that's a hard kind of beauty to have in this stupid brash shallow and plastic world.
    she is not the mainstream.
    and aren't you GLAD!!! she is like a little breath of fresh air in all the pollution.
    if she ever has a dark day... tell her to read my words.
    i too had that kind of beauty. and i managed to enchant one of the most wonderful men this world has known. i miss him to this day. we had 17 years together. a lifetime.
    hug her for me.
    and hug ace too!
    good grief. i've turned this comment into a cross between 'true confessions' and saint bernadette! LOLOL.
    counting down to your june holiday! xo

    1. I love your enthusiasm! And yes - I will tell her. And thank you for ordering Asking. And thank you for sharing your words. xo

  2. A beautiful post today, beautiful words, beautiful thoughts, beautiful photos:)


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