I love National Poetry Month -- all that wealth of words flowing around and everyone remembering to love it. You all probably know about this, but for the month of April, Knopf Publishing will email you a poem a day. You can subscribe by emailing sub_knopfpoetry at info dot randomhouse dot com (see the clever spam avoidance?) To whet your appetite, here's yesterday's poem from Marge Piercy.
The streets of Detroit were lined with elms
I remember elm trees that were
the thing of beauty on grimy
smoke-bleared streets stinking of death
and garbage, but over the cramped
rotting houses, the elms arched.
They were cities of leaves.
I would lie under them
and my eyes would rise
buoyed up and surfeited
in immense rustling viridescence.
They enclosed me like a cathedral.
I entered them as into the heart
of a sanctuary in a mountain
pure and vast and safe.
I wanted to live in their boughs.
They gave no fruit, no nuts
and their fall color was weak,
but their embrace was strong.
I would stare at them, how
their powerful trunks burst
out of the dirt fully formed
and graceful, how they rushed
toward the sky and then halted
to spread out in a firmament
of green, of green, of green.
P.S. Here's what I mean by a CSA -- everyone pitches in to support the growing, and it comes to you regularly, bountifully, and for free.
Off the Shelf
10 hours ago