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 New Blade by Anzai Hitoshi

My son is using a new razor
with clumsy hands.
Grooming himself as a grownup for the first time, 
he spreads his elbows wide, as in a ritual, 
very fastidiously, not looking sideways.
From below his temple a smear of blood 
as big as a bird’s tongue keeps flowing, 
no matter how often he wipes it off, 
and he looks a little afraid.
what is hurt in him, I wonder.
His naked back is moistened, shining bright 
like a tree with its bark peeled off.

Although he doesn’t seem to hear them, 
birds are singing loud in unison 
around the young tree trunks.
He doesn’t seem to see it, 
but the sea is rolling in the mirror.

~ translated by Naoshi Koriyama and Edward Leuders, from What
Have You Lost, edited by Naomi Shihab Nye, (HarperCollins, 1999)

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