Guest poem submitted by Mike Monje:
(Poem #474) Otherwise
I got out of bed on two strong legs. It might have been otherwise. I ate cereal, sweet milk, ripe, flawless peach. It might have been otherwise. I took the dog uphill to the birch wood. All morning I did the work I love. At noon I lay down with my mate. It might have been otherwise. We ate dinner together at a table with silver candlesticks. It might have been otherwise. I slept in a bed in a room with paintings on the walls, and planned another day just like this day. But one day, I know, it will be otherwise.
from Constance (1993). Hey, I've been out of school for too many years to speak intelligently about poetry. But here goes... I suggested Jane Kenyon's poem because it's accessible, self contained, and probably her most famous. You can sit with one of her poems for fifteen or twenty minutes and then leave satisfied. I like to like a poem's speaker, and I always like Kenyon's. She's a neighbor I'd like to invite to my BBQ. Also, read this aloud -- she's a musician. Mike. [Bio] Jane Kenyon was born in Ann Arbor, Michigan in 1947. She published four collections of poetry including Otherwise (Greywolf), Book of Quiet (Greywolf), Constance (Greywolf), Let Evening Come (Greywolf), and From Room to Room Alicejames Books). Her translations of the poems of Anna Akhmatova resulted in Twenty Poems of Anna Akhmatava (Ally Press). She was awarded a Guugenheim Fellowship, the PEN Voelcker Award, and was featured with her husband Donald Hall in the Emmy Award-winning Bill Moyers special, "A Life Together." She died in April 1995 of leukemia. -- [broken link] http://arts.endow.gov:80/explore/Writers/Kenyon.html [Minstrels Links] Anna Akhmatova, an excerpt from the 'Requiem' sequence: poem #231