Poet Jane Hirshfield said "... the feeling I have about poem-writing (is) that it is always an exploration, of discovering something I didn't already know.  Who I am shifts from moment to moment, year to year.  What I can perceive does as well.  A new poem peers into mystery, into whatever lies just beyond the edge of knowable ground."

I bring a different poem to the writing classes each week, not only to inspire but to introduce new poets to the group members.

The Friendship Inside Us by Jack Gilbert

Why the mouth? Why is it the mouth we put to mouth
at the final moments? Why not the famous groin?
Because the groin is far away.
The mouth is close up against the spirit.
We couple desperately all night before setting out
for years in prison. But that is the body's goodbye.
We kiss the person we love last thing before
the coffin is shut, because it is our being
touching the unknown. A kiss is the frontier in us.
It is where the courting becomes the courtship,
where the dancing ends and the dance begins.
The mouth is our chief access to the intimacy
in which she may reside. Her mouth is the porch
of the brain. The forecourt of the heart.
The way to the mystery enthroned. Where we meet
momentarily amid the seraphim and the powers.

~ from Refusing Heaven (Alfred A. Knopf, 2009)


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