Ars Poetica #100: I Believe
by Elizabeth Alexander


Poetry, I tell my students,
is idiosyncratic. Poetry
is where we are ourselves,
(though Sterling Brown said
"Every 'I' is a dramatic 'I'")
digging in the clam flats
for the shell that snaps,
emptying the proverbial pocketbook.
Poetry is what you find
in the dirt in the corner,
overhear on the bus, God
in the details, the only way
to get from here to there.
Poetry (and now my voice is rising)
is not all love, love, love
and I'm sorry the dog died.
Poetry (here I hear myself loudest)
is the human voice,
and are we not of interest to each other?

Comments

  1. . . . .and poetry
    does the heavy lifting.

    ReplyDelete
  2. By George, I think you've got it!! That's it exactly.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I like that one. Isn't that the woman who wrote and read the poem for the inauguration?

    ReplyDelete

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