Poem of the Day - Jane Hirshfield

I was rereading THE LIVES OF THE HEART by Jane Hirshfield and found that I dog-eared page 86.

Here was the poem on that page--

The Poet

She is working now, in a room
not unlike this one,
the one where I write, or you read.
Her table is covered with paper.
The light of the lamp would be
tempered by a shade, where the bulb's
single harshness might dissolve,
but it is not; she has taken it off.
Her poems? I will never know them,
though they are the ones I most need.
Even the alphabet she writes in
I cannot decipher. Her chair --
let us imagine whether it is leather
or canvas, vinyl or wicker. Let her
have a chair, her shadeless lamp,
the table. Let one or two she loves
be in the next room. Let the door
be closed, the sleeping ones healthy.
Let her have time, and silence,
enough paper to make mistakes and go on.

© Jane Hirshfield

And to think I had almost forgotten about this poem.


  1. And to think I, too, had forgotten this poem. I am going to my shelf right now to pull this book down. Glad I stopped by!

  2. I think this pairs up nicely with Wilbur's "The Writer."


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