For poetry makes nothing happen

Donโ€™t say you have never asked yourself
if the world needs beauty as much as it needs
food. May I toil not as a lily of the field,
starscattered while you trudge upright
acknowledged paths, useful.

Like train tracks we need not touch
to hum; with practical passion, quiet
prayer, you swim south as I arrow north
shivering, surviving, a drop-in-this-ocean
way of happening


Title and last line borrowed from W. H. Auden’s “In Memory of W. B. Yeats.”

14 thoughts on “For poetry makes nothing happen”

  1. This is lovely. It brought some of the poems of Jack Gilbert to mind. In his book Refusing Heaven, the first poem, A Brief for the Defence is a defence for joy amid all the sorrow… “we must risk delight…” A balance. Beautifully crafted Jennifer.

    Liked by 1 person

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