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.

Perhaps by Shu Ting

Perhaps these thoughts of ours
      will never find an audience
Perhaps the mistaken road
      will end in a mistake
Perhaps the lamps we light one at a time
      will be blown out, one at a time
Perhaps the candles of our lives will gutter out
      without lighting a fire to warm us.

Perhaps when all the tears have been shed
      the earth will be more fertile.
Perhaps when we sing praises to the sun
      the sun will praise us in return
Perhaps these heavy burdens
      will strengthen our philosophy
Perhaps when we weep for those in misery
      we must be silent about miseries of our own

Perhaps
Because of our irresistible sense of mission
We have no choice

~ (translated from the Chinese by Carolyn Kizer) 
from A Book of Luminous Things, edited by Czeslaw
Milosz (Harcourt Brace & Co, 1996)


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