Heart Happy (cathy_edgett) wrote,
Heart Happy

Poetry Evolution!

I give another taste of what Hari Bhajan has chosen for her newsletter Poetry Evolution.

Robert Kelly
Excerpt from an Interview
American Poetry Review, Jan/Feb, 2008

Once I called craft "perfected attention," and somehow that phrase caught on a while, long enough to be quoted. I think it's true enough as stated; I could gloss it: listen. Listen all the time. Listen especially to the spaces between words, the friction that rubs there, word against word, sound eliciting sound--from such attentions, propositions speak, images arise, truth happens. That is the truth: truth happens. As we speak. What the poet has to do is constantly look away from the poet's own intentions, own meaning, and focus intently, intently, on what's going on with the words in front. The words that alone can speak what you really mean.

Poetry doesn't in general teach how to live, does it? Doesn't it rather speak, out of living, a word that only living knows, but only the poem can speak? Poetry reveals, tells, even shows. But only life teaches how to live. Poetry listens.


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