Lay Claim to Poetry

While sorting through old notebooks, a scrawled note slipped out, a piece of paper I once pulled out of my pocket to capture words that bypassed thinking and went straight for my core- I didn’t know where they came from though I know that they were spoken by a person and not taken from a page.  When I looked it up, I found at the other end: Adrienne Rich, stalwart genius wordsmith and warrior, on a stage in Western Mass, speaking to my 20-year old self, fervent believer in the power of both resistance and poetry.

“We see daily that our lives are terrible and little, without continuity, buyable and saleable at any moment, mere blips on a screen, that this is the way we live now…We have become stoical; we hibernate; we numb ourselves with chemicals; we emigrate internally into fictions of past and future; we thirst for guns; but as a people, we have rarely, if ever, known what it is to tremble with fear, to lament, to rage, to praise, to solemnize, to say we have to done this, to our sorrow, to say enough, to say we will, to say we will not.  To lay claim to poetry.”

Adrienne Rich, What is Found There



One thought on “Lay Claim to Poetry

  1. Pingback: Look for… | The Hummingwhale

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