Thursday, January 15, 2009

Poetry Friday: I'm Hosting!

I usually post Richard Wilbur's The Writer about every four months.

I see that I have allowed a scandalous eight months to pass without sharing this most beloved gem.

I'm appalled. I know what I must do.

The Writer
by Richard Wilbur

In her room at the prow of the house
Where light breaks, and the windows are tossed with linden,
My daughter is writing a story.

I pause in the stairwell, hearing
From her shut door a commotion of typewriter-keys
Like a chain hauled over a gunwale.

Young as she is, the stuff
Of her life is a great cargo, and some of it heavy:
I wish her a lucky passage.

But now it is she who pauses,
As if to reject my thought and its easy figure.
A stillness greatens, in which

The whole house seems to be thinking,
And then she is at it again with a bunched clamor
Of strokes, and again is silent.

I remember the dazed starling
Which was trapped in that very room, two years ago;
How we stole in, lifted a sash

And retreated, not to affright it;
And how for a helpless hour, through the crack of the door,
We watched the sleek, wild, dark

And iridescent creature
Batter against the brilliance, drop like a glove
To the hard floor, or the desk-top

Read the rest of the poem here ... listen to it here. And, for an interview with Richard Wilbur, go here, to the Poetry Foundation.

Mr. Linky awaits your contributions to today's Poetry Friday round-up. Please leave a link to your post as well as a comment. I'll be rounding up the links and providing color commentary as often as I can during the day. Thanks!

11:15 AM:
Updated to note:
Some plumbing problems and real life are getting in the way of blogging. :) Please enjoy all the Poetry Friday links via Mr. Linky, and check the comment box, too, in case the LinkMeister is being petulant with anyone. I've tried to go ahead and add anyone who wasn't already showing up in Mr. Linky. Sorry not to be able to provide a more in-depth round-up this week!


  1. What a fabulous poem!

  2. Awesome, Karen!
    Thank you for opening Poetry Friday for submissions the night before. One less responsibility for my bleary morning eyes.

    And thanks for hosting. Happy Friday!

  3. Hi and thanks for hosting. I'll echo Andrea's comment about opening for submissions the night before. Thanks!

    My post, after a brief discussion of basal readers versus anthologies, shares a great winter poem by Canadian poet, Raymond Souster called "The Wild Wolves of Winter."

    Read it here:

  4. Thanks for hosting Karen!

  5. Hi, Karen! Love that poem every time you share it. I can't hear it enough. I'm in today with a poem I found for my daughter, who is happily in Paris and "surrounded by scientists" for the International Year of Astronomy.

  6. One of my favorite poems, Karen. Thanks for posting "The Writer."

    Today I'm taking a little trip to "Hanapepe" on the island of Kaua'i. Thanks for hosting! Your coffee is the best :).

    Jama Rattigan

  7. "Batter against the brilliance,"

    My God, what powers we possess! Thank you for this poem today. Never too much of that!

    I am on a Rumi kick, which is inspiring me in my health struggles. Thanks for hosting!

  8. Hi Karen,

    Thanks for hosting, and for sharing that great poem.

    I'm posting Wendell Berry's "Come Forth" today. Mr. Linky's not working at the moment, so I'll leave the link here:

  9. Repetition is good. It's how we learn things by heart.

    I had an amazing convergence of photography and Poetry Foundation search, that led to me thinking about parts and wholes.

  10. Thanks for hosting, Karen. I love the Wilbur poem!
    I have a familiar-not-familiar poem by Paul Laurence Dunbar at Ink for Lit.

  11. I love that Wilbur poem - I know you've posted it before, but I am always, always happy to see it. It's like meeting an old friend!

    Thanks for hosting!

  12. I love this poem.

  13. Thank you for hosting. What a great poet. I have an inauguration theme going.

  14. What a beautiful poem. Isn't it sad that we've lost the lyrical sound of typewriter keys/

  15. Thanks for hosting. I'm in with a poem by my daughter - which makes your poem about the writing daughter so very appropriate!

  16. Karen,

    Thanks for doing the roundup this week. At Wild Rose Reader, I've posted an original fairy tale poem entitled "A Charming Prince Has Second Thoughts."

    At Blue Rose Girls, I have Wendell Berry's "The Peace of Wild Things."

    P.S. I hope it's warmer where you live than it is here in Massachusetts today!

  17. That's a beautiful poem.

    Thanks for hosting. I'm in today with Elizabeth Alexander at


  18. Thanks for hosting, Karen! I'm in with a roundup of terrific very short poems based on a cool waterfall image.

    I love the poem you posted--8 months--shame on you! ;>)

  19. What a wonderful poem!! Thank you for hosting. I am in with an original haiku at

  20. Beautiful Wilbur poem-- thanks for sharing AND hosting. I've posted a new poem by J. Pat Lewis in honor of the new puppy for the White House!

  21. I have an original poem, but I can't get Mr. Linky to accept it-- could possibly add the link for me?


  22. I love having a poem repeat -- that is a great idea that I never considered. The world seems very devoted to always providing new content, but revisiting old favorites is refreshing in its own way.

  23. Thanks for hosting. My contribution is a poem by Edgar Albert Guest.

  24. Thanks for hosting. I'm in with an original poem (an ode to our dog) and some book recommendations for the loss of a pet.

  25. Thanks for hosting!

  26. Thank you for hosting (and I love The Writer!!!)

    I'm in with thoughts on freedom and hope and a you tube reading by Maya Angelou:

  27. What a beautiful poem!

  28. Thanks for hosting, Karen. I'm in (late today!) with a poem by British writer Siegfried Sassoon, called Everyone Sang.

  29. Thank you for hosting, Karen! I'm late in the line with an original haiku, Sea Breeze, and at readertotz we have A Cat Came Fiddling.

  30. I have a poem about friendship to help celebrate my daughter's birthday. It's Longfellow's "The Arrow and the Song."

    Thanks for hosting!

  31. Thanks for hosting.
    I posted two wonderful poems about perspective. One by Kristine O'Connell George and another by Alice Schertle.

  32. Thanks for hosting, Karen. I've got a poem from my upcoming Dinothesaurus, along with a new starred review.

  33. Thanks for hosting, and for sharing. I'm dropping by late with some random jottings done while at school this week.

  34. Lovely poem and great idea! I've added a silly one my children are working on memorizing right now.

  35. Once again, I'm reminded that I am most definitely not a writer! But I'm a reader who certainly enjoys those who are. I'm in this week with Phyllis McGinley on good manners. In fact, I think I might be in for the rest of the year with Miss McGinley!

    Thank you for hosting, Karen, and have a wonderful weekend with the family!

    Becky at Farm School

  36. Better late than never! I just posted VARIATION ON AN OLD RHYME, a poem that leads the reader one direction, then ends in an entirely different spot.

  37. I posted a link to Poe's The Raven, in honor of his 200th. Thanks for hosting!

  38. Hi Karen,
    I have a fragment of one of Sappho's poems on my blog for Poetry Friday.
    Thank you for hosting!

  39. Thanks Karen for hosting. My poem is at