I’ve fallen deep back in with poetry recently: reading it, writing it, reading about it, thinking about it. There is a great bookstore in my new town (Boulder, CO) that sells only poetry books. It makes my heart warm to just know that it exists, and it is named Innisfree after a poem I love.
My husband gave me a gift certificate to Innisfree for our anniversary, and I found a great book of poetry there by Linda Pastan, and very quickly fell in love with her work. One particular poem spoke very directly to what I’m living right now, and I wanted to share it with you. It applies well beyond poetry to anything you ever might want to do but feel dwarfed by the geniuses that have already done it so well. It is especially encouraging to read such a beautiful poem about this topic because it means that even the Greats have these feelings. Enjoy!
by Linda Pastan
Sometimes I think all the best poems
have been written already,
and no one has time to read them,
so why try to write more?
At other times though,
I remember how one flower
in a meadow already full of flowers
somehow adds to the general fireworks effect
as you get to the top of a hill
in Colorado, say, in high summer
and just look down at all that brimming color.
I also try to convince myself
that the smallest note of the smallest
instrument in the band,
the triangle for instance,
is important to the conductor
who stands there, pointing his finger
in the direction of the percussions,
demanding that one silvery ping.
And I decide not to stop trying,
at least not for a while, though in truth
I’d rather just sit here reading
how someone else has been acquainted
with the night already, and perfectly.