the dream of a common language

Earlier this evening while on my dinner break, I was on Facebook and noticed several references and quotes to poet Adrienne Rich. These mentions told me two things: My friends have (unsurprisingly) excellent taste in writers and that Ms. Rich had died.

source


She is one of a handful of poets, along with the likes of T.S. Eliot and Ted Hughes, who have inspired my own writing. I wrote academic papers on her and titled my BFA thesis "Whatever Happens, This Is," taken from her [floating poem]. Frequently her graceful words were used as epigraphs to my own.

She was an amazing woman and writer, fierce and fabulous. She will be missed.

So, I share with you now not only my absolute favorite Rich poem but quite possibly my favorite poem ever. This is selection II from her Twenty-One Love Poems:

I wake up in your bed. I know I have been dreaming.
Much earlier, the alarm broke us from each other,
you’ve been at your desk for hours. I know what I dreamed:
our friend the poet comes into my room
where I’ve been writing for days,
drafts, carbons, poems are scattered everywhere,
and I want to show her one poem
which is the poem of my life. But I hesitate,
and wake. You’ve kissed my hair
to wake me. I dreamed you were a poem,
I say, a poem I wanted to show someone…
and I laugh and fall dreaming again
of the desire to show you to everyone I love,
to move openly together
in the pull of gravity, which is not simple,
which carries the feathered grass a long way down the upbreathing air.


Adrienne Rich
May 16, 1929 - March 27, 2012

 

Lady Lazarus
the year of the phoenix

Comments

In order to comment on BlogHer.com, you'll need to be logged in. You'll be given the option to log in or create an account when you publish your comment. If you do not log in or create an account, your comment will not be displayed.