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.

Sunday by Lawrence Raab

    So that’s life, then: things as they are? 
                           — Wallace Stevens 

Once there was music that could tear
your heart open and heal it
before you took another breath.
That was what art could do.
Kings and princes, bishops and popes

all knew this, as they knew
how to get what they wanted and keep
what they had. Mostly what happens
to people doesn’t happen by chance.
You spend your life in the mud,

you eat the same thin soup each night,
and then on Sunday a thousand angels
start to sing. The walls are ablaze
with suffering and forgiveness.
And you think this is what you’ll see

when you die. When you yearn,
this is what you yearn for. Or something
like it, the version you’ve been told
you can afford. They were smart to keep
belief and understanding at a distance,

go for the big effects, everything you get
when you’re through with this world,
the one you got stuck with—potatoes and soup,
the morning and the afternoon,

the afternoon and the evening,
things as they are.

~ from The History of Forgetting (Penguin Books, 2009)


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