A poet can find in some simple and familiar thing a resonance with some other thing — some complex or mysterious or terrible thing — and write apparently straightforward lines about the first that also address, obliquely, the second. Allison Adair’s piece, “Miscarriage,” which leads the 2018 volume of The Best American Poetry, is an example of this found resonance. Recommended.

Poetry Made Another Way

A poem I wrote years ago about Thanksgiving had its turn this week in the review I’m doing of my inventory. I like the themes of the piece and some of the lines, and I especially like a particular word that’s perfect for a point I’m trying to make, but has the lyrical grace of an anvil in a tutu. I decided to write a note in my journal about my doomed determination to find a place for this word in my refashioned Thanksgiving piece. As I wrote, I realized that the note itself might be thought a poem of sorts, especially these days. So I’ve sent it out. Submitted it. Poetry made another way.

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A Poet’s Work

On Monday around noon, the reality settled over me that I wouldn’t be favored by the weather dice. The rain that had arrived in the night and stayed for the morning would be falling hard on me in a few minutes as I walked the quarter mile or so on an errand not easily avoided. So I put on a shirt and another shirt and my winter coat and gave myself to the not-quite-downpour. And the wind.

The errand done, I walked briskly back to my little place and made a fresh pot of coffee and sat down to work, scratching out a decent draft of a piece about the very adventure I’d just finished.

Poetry’s really just right for me. I can try to contribute some sense of what matters in the world without committing my year to any particular characters or plots or places.