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Jan Zwicky

The sound of wind in leaves,that was what puzzled me, it took me yearsto understand that it was music.Into silence, a gesture.A sentence: that it speaks.This is the mystery: meaning.Not that these folds of rock existbut that their beauty, here,now, nails us to the sky. — Jan Zwicky, from “The Geology of Norway,” The Harvard… Continue reading Jan Zwicky

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Ralph Waldo Emerson

These roses under my window make no reference to former roses or to better ones; they are for what they are; they exist with God today. There is no time for them. There is simply the rose; it is perfect in every moment of its existence. But man postpones or remembers; he does not live… Continue reading Ralph Waldo Emerson

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C.T. Salazar

I could believe the soul is a crater—the impact ofyour hands on my chest. Fingertips & lips, forest& fire. You taste like cinnamon, or cyanide. — C.T. Salazar, from “You Called Me Castaway and I Called You,” micro collection This Might Have Meant Fire: Poems, INCH quarterly (no. 39, Summer 2019)

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Thomas Moore

The Light Of Other Days OFT, in the stilly night,   Ere slumber’s chain has bound me,Fond Memory brings the light   Of other days around me:   The smiles, the tears   Of boyhood’s years,   The words of love then spoken;   The eyes that shone,   Now dimm’d and gone,   The cheerful hearts now broken!Thus, in the stilly night,  … Continue reading Thomas Moore

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Nathan Brown

Poetic approaches to the limits of fabrication are not so historically determined. Sometime around 1862, Emily Dickinson starts a poem with “I cannot live with You –”, then proceeds to unfold a labyrinth of grammatical, theological, and syllogistic implications before arriving at the following decisive formulation: “So We must meet apart – / You there… Continue reading Nathan Brown

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James Baldwin

Societies never know it, but the war of an artist with his society is a lover’s war, and he does, at his best, what lovers do, which is to reveal the beloved to himself and, with that revelation, to make freedom real. — James Baldwin, “The Creative Process,” Creative America. (The National Cultural Center /… Continue reading James Baldwin

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Stephen Crane

I saw a creature, naked, bestial, Who, squatting upon the ground, Held his heart in his hands, And ate of it. I said, “Is it good, friend?” “It is bitter—bitter,” he answered; “But I like it Because it is bitter, And because it is my heart. — Stephen Crane, “In the Desert,” Twentieth-Century American Poetry… Continue reading Stephen Crane

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John Keats

The weariness, the fever, and the fret    Here, where men sit and hear each other groan; Where palsy shakes a few, sad, last gray hairs,    Where youth grows pale, and spectre-thin, and dies;      Where but to think is to be full of sorrow            And leaden-eyed despairs. — John Keats, from “Ode… Continue reading John Keats

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