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One last poem for Poetry Month.

And a recommendation: if you'd like to hear Leonard Cohen reading several of his poems, Canada's National Film Board has put Ladies and Gentlemen... Mr. Leonard Cohen online.
"This informal black-and-white portrait of Leonard Cohen shows him at age 30 on a visit to his hometown of Montreal, where the poet, novelist and songwriter comes 'to renew his neurotic affiliations.' He reads his poetry to an enthusiastic crowd, strolls the streets of the city, relaxes in this three-dollar-a-night hotel room and even takes a bath."
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Maxine Kumin died this year. I didn't know that. She is not mentioned in The Oxford Book of American Poetry, Chosen and Edited by David Lehman. Was she not highly regarded?

I started reading her poems and essays when I was new to living in the country, new to having a horse to take care of and a dog to train, new to the post-hole digger and the fencing pliers, to thinking about drainage, to making compost. Maxine Kumin wrote poems about these things that made me say yes, that.

The Excrement Poem

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This is an excellent poem about the lessening of fear that can come with becoming an old lady. I mean, you're still you, of course; you don't stop being anxious, if you are an anxious person, or being prudent if you are a prudent person; but the amount of being prudent, being patient, being cautious you are willing to give right now in return for pie-in-the-sky-by-and-by is much less.

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This one is called The Snow Man, by which I mean Benton Fraser, when he has been alone for a long time. In the snow. So, after the Quest, after Ray has gone home to Chicago. Before they both realize that being apart is wrong and figure out what they need to do get right. "Beholds nothing that is not there." You can keep telling yourself that, Frase, but it isn't ever going to make it true.
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Text here.

You may recognize the poet's name from One Art which is -- I think it is a perfect poem. I read that one to myself a lot. Here's one I am not too intimidated to read to you:


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