Carolyn Forche: a poet still vested

Monday, May 17, 2010

Years ago, outside of Prague, I spent an afternoon with Carolyn Forche—a train ride away from the city where she had read, the night before, from one of my favorite poems ever written, a haunt of a poem in honor of Terrence des Pres.  I think her often—of her and the stories she told to those who had gathered there, in a Czech backyard.  Grandmother stories.  Oven stories.  Stories of war.

A few weeks ago, I was stopped by these lines in a new Carolyn Forche poem called "The Lightkeeper," which appears in full in the May 3rd issue of The New Yorker.

Forche remains a poet vested with power:

... You taught me to live like this.
That after death it would be as it was before we were born. Nothing
to be afraid.  Nothing but happiness as unbearable as the dread
from which it comes.  Go toward the light always, be without ships.


Lilian Nattel said...

Thank you for sharing that.

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