Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Poet Laureate

I realize no one really cares about the Poet Laureate of the United States -- or maybe not no one, but I don't imagine there are that many people out there who give it much more than a passing thought, if at all.

Except for me and my people. I woke this morning to an email from my good friend S who stated her day had begun with the sound of rats scurrying around under her house, an infestation that is driving her and her family nuts. And just as I wrote the other day, that when things in the real world get too crazy and the news one horrific thing after the next, I run to the hills with poetry, S confirmed that she had also woken to learn that Philip Levine had been appointed our Poet Laureate.

Holy Day

--Philip Levine

Los Angeles hums
a little tune --
trucks down
the coast road

click here to read the rest


  1. 'Except for me and my people. " Oh, I imagine there are a few more than that. I can think of quite a few, actually, and it makes me glad.

  2. I did know of his appointment but have read none of his poetry. I'll have to rectify that. I just finished reading "The Paris Wife". It was o.k.. I did have to smile at a conversation between Hemingway and Fitzgerald in which they said they didn't understand what Gertrude Stein meant in much of her poetry. I don't either!!


  3. There is still hope for our country when we have a poet laureate. That poem is beautiful.

  4. I agree with Kimmie. Just HAVING a poet laureate is hopeful.
    I don't know why, but Levine's face reminds me a bit of George Washington Carver's. An early, early hero of mine.

  5. So old "No, you may not make a children's book out of my fabulous poem" is no longer the bearer of the laurel? I confess I'm not sorry to hear that the wreath has been passed! =)

  6. I love his poem Ask for Nothing.
    Thanks for posting this!

  7. O.K., that poem bummed me out. Someone enlighten me. I mean, I know that a beautiful, well written poem can be sad; it's just I feel I'm missing something with this one.

  8. My husband texted me, about to board a plane from Humboldt to home, with the good news of his appointment. Not many--but still a few--quiet celebrations happen with news like this. Little fires in those hills.

  9. Somehow I missed it and rejoice, as others stated, that we HAVE a Poet Laureate and especially that he is Philip Levine. For reasons based on roots in the San Joaquin Valley, his teaching so long at Cal State Fresno has particular meaning.



Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...