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On Sundays, We Read Poetry

Each Sunday, I post a brief introduction to a collection of poetry I've been loving. I include one poem that I think really sings. No review. No need. If it's here, you'll know I recommend it. If you have one to recommend (yours or someone else's), send it along. I'll do my best to be here every Sunday.


Ted Kooser's back with some thoughts from March. The interesting thing about these poetic paragraphs is that even the ones that aren't as thought-provoking or lovely to me can still have a sentence or phrase in them that shines. I may not respond immediately to the lost billfold, but the description of the owner of that wallet standing "in the steady boat of your shadow" can still stop me with awe.

This month, the one I'm sitting with starts a bit awkwardly with the arrival of a lumbering dog. But oh, the work it does from there.

Howard, my yellow lab, has lugged a heavy cow bone up from some cleft in the pasture and left it on the lawn like a rolled up Sunday paper, its news almost completely gnawed away by weather, though one can read a little of it: how the hoofprints of her sisters brimmed and stank with muddy water and the flies were like sparks in her eyes. And in almost every paragraph it seems that grass is mentioned, like a prayer. But Howard has tired of the lowing woes of a cow's last report, dried out and hollow now, and has fallen asleep. He dreams of a bone cracked open before him, the violent language of marrow, like licking the red from a sunset.


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