American Culture · American Literature · Classic · Collection · Contemporary · Excerpt · Passage · Poetry

Gregory Orr

I entered the empty room.
I sat on the floor and drew pictures all day.
One day I held a picture against the bare wall:
it was a window. Climbing through,

I stood in a sloping field
at dusk. As I began walking, night settled.
Far ahead in the valley, I saw the lights
of the village, and always at my back, I felt
the white room swallowing what was passed.

— Gregory Orr, from “The Room,” Selected and New Poems (Wesleyan University Press, 1988)

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