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Now and Telling
from Jennifer Michael Hecht's
Who Said

Now I’ve told and there’s nothing worse
to find out about me.

Where I come from there were curses
that cursed me.

Herbs and drink to drub the screech,
talk to drain the ink from me.

I’ve told and there’s nothing worse.

Talk to drain the ink from me,
to find out about me.

Where I come from there were curses.

Herbs and drink to drub the screech
that cursed me.

Now I’ve told and there’s nothing worse
to find out about me.

Talk to drain the ink from me.

Now that I’ve told there is nothing
to hide from strangers.

I still live so I surmise I am forgiven
for being so foul as a bird called that.

Now I’ve told the secret of the
words. Nothing better or worse.

Where I come from there was a curse
now I’ve told and something is better.

Nothing is worse
now I can hunt, now I cut runts,

now I am the mistress of the curse.
Words obey my orders.

highlighted
at the press

“Poetry is a way of looking at the world for the first time.”

—W.S. Merwin (1927-2019)

 

It is with profound sadness that we share this news: W.S. Merwin, former United States poet laureate, Academy of American Poets Chancellor, environmental activist, literary translator, and two-time Pulitzer prize-winning author, passed away in his sleep on March 15, 2019 at his home in the Pe’ahi watershed near Haiku-Pauwela, HI. He was 91.

 

William’s final original collection of poems, Garden Time, was published in 2016, and two retrospective collections, a 50th Anniversary Edition of The Lice, and The Essential W.S. Merwin, were published in 2017. His career as a published poet spanned nearly seven decades.

 

We look back now in gratitude for the countless times W.S. Merwin has inspired us, through poetry, to see the world anew.

 

“For the Anniversary of My Death”

 

Every year without knowing it I have passed the day

When the last fires will wave to me

And the silence will set out

Tireless traveler

Like the beam of a lightless star

 

Then I will no longer

Find myself in life as in a strange garment

Surprised at the earth

And the love of one woman

And the shamelessness of men

As today writing after three days of rain

Hearing the wren sing and the falling cease

And bowing not knowing to what

— W.S. Merwin

 

Leave a personal tribute to W.S. Merwin

Make a memorial gift in support of W.S. Merwin's poetry

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Matt Colley reviews
Come On All You Ghosts

by Matthew Zapruder

Incredible. Breathtaking. Expansive, yet intimate. Youthful yet discerning. These poems are at once comforting & playful and incisive & revealing.

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