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.

Islands by Derek Walcott

    [for Margaret]

Merely to name them is the prose Of diarists, to make you a name For readers who like travellers praise Their beds and beaches as the same; But islands can only exist If we have loved them. I seek, As climate seeks its style, to write Verse crisp as sand, clear as sunlight, Cold as the curved wave, ordinary As a tumbler of island water; Yet, like a diarist, thereafter I savour their salt-hunted rooms (Your body stirring the creased sea Of crumpled sheets), whose mirrors lose Our huddled, sleeping images, Like words which love had hoped to use Erased with the surf's pages. So, like a diarist in sand, I mark the peace with which you graced Particular islands, descending A narrow stair to light the lamps Against the night surf's noises, shielding A leaping mantle with one hand, Or simply scaling fish for supper, Onions, jack-fish, bread, red snapper; And on each kiss the harsh sea-taste, And how by moonlight you were made To study most the surf's unyielding Patience though it seems a waste. ~ from Selected Poems (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2007)


website contents © copyright 2017 by Sharon Singer
with the exception of 'poems of the week' where © copyright remains with the poets or their publishers