on the cusp...

Someone is trying to make music somewhere with a pair of wooden spoons on an oil drum with cello, boom box, harmonica, voice.

A woman and her son wait for the bus.

A farmer considers the changing sky; A teacher says, ‘Take out your pencils. Begin.’

We encounter each other in words, words spiny or smooth, whispered or declaimed; words to consider, reconsider.

             - from “Praise Song for the Day,” Elizabeth Alexander

                        20 January 2009


Collin Kelley said...

I think these are my favorite lines. Other poets are ripping Alexander to shreds over this, but I like it.

esk said...

I really like this part: We encounter each other in words. Words are just that powerful.

DeadMule said...

I think Elizabeth Alexander did a great job. I hate it that other poets are criticizing her. Like we've read to an audience that size. LOL

Bruce said...

Awful poem. Mindlessly praising it does a disservice to poetry.

sam of the ten thousand things said...

I posted part of the poem, Bruce. I didn't praise the piece - although I have to say that I like the poem.

Literature is such a relative and subjective area. We like what we like and don't like what we don't like.

I don't believe we could prove Alexander's piece to be a good or a bad poem. Nor should we try.

Lisa Allender said...

"A teacher says: Take out your pencils, begin."
Understated, subtle, and a reference to a (our, United States')brand-new day.
I loved it!

LKD said...

"What if the mightiest word is love?"

That's the line that won't let go of me.