Friday, March 27, 2015

Poem for the Weekend: Stanley Kunitz

I was surprised to find that I haven't chosen something by Stanley Kunitz as a Poem for the Weekend yet. I did blog about one of my favorite poems by him here. Kunitz attended Harvard, served in the Army during WWII, taught at several preeminent U.S. universities, and won oodles of awards for his poetry. He was named Poet Laureate in 2000, and died in 2006 at the age of 100. You can watch Mr. Kunitz read one of his poems here.

How Long is the Night

by Stanley Kunitz (1905-2006)

On the anvil of love my flesh has been hammered out.
Indifferent, in the indifferent air,
I circulate and suck the star-space in.
No one is dear to me now,
Leastly myself that sickened in the night.
I would abandon this loose bag of bones
And walk between the world's great wounds, unpitying.


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"As soon as we express something, we devalue it strangely. We believe ourselves to have dived down into the depths of the abyss, and when we once again reach the surface, the drops of water on our pale fingertips no longer resemble the ocean from which they came...Nevertheless, the treasure shimmers in the darkness unchanged." ---Franz Kafka