Guest poem sent in by Rukmini Kumar
(Poem #1666) Selecting A Reader
First, I would have her be beautiful, and walking carefully up on my poetry at the loneliest moment of an afternoon, her hair still damp at the neck from washing it. She should be wearing a raincoat, an old one, dirty from not having money enough for the cleaners. She will take out her glasses, and there in the bookstore, she will thumb over my poems, then put the book back up on its shelf. She will say to herself, "For that kind of money, I can get my raincoat cleaned." And she will.
I heard Ted Kooser interviewed on the show Fresh Air on NPR. Ted Kooser is America's first poet laureate from the great plains (He was born in Iowa and lived in Nebraska,check [broken link] http://www.tedkooser.com/about.html). I loved this poem for its simple sensousness combined with an unaffected practicality (Interestingly, Kooser was an insurance representative for most of his professional life). Rukmini Kumar. [Martin adds] I was enjoying this poem in a lazy sort of way until I came to the ending, which jolted me awake, metaphorically speaking, and put this poem firmly on my "highly memorable" list. Perhaps I am overly enamoured with endings (particularly ones that are both powerful and unexpected), but in my opinion, they have a disproportionately large impact on the reader, and can easily be responsible for the net effect of the poem. This is not to say that I did not appreciate the rest of the poem, but it was definitely the last two lines that made it for me. martin [Links] Repeating the link to the biography: [broken link] http://www.tedkooser.com/about.html