browse engage about us donate
last name title topic
cart 0 items
sign in
explore
explore a poem
explore new releases
explore poets
explore our community
On the Subject of Poetry
from W.S. Merwin's
The Essential W.S. Merwin

I do not understand the world, Father.
By the millpond at the end of the garden
There is a man who slouches listening
To the wheel revolving in the stream, only
There is no wheel there to revolve.

He sits in the end of March, but he sits also
In the end of the garden; his hands are in
His pockets. It is not expectation
On which he is intent, nor yesterday
To which he listens. It is a wheel turning.

When I speak, Father, it is the world
That I must mention. He does not move
His feet nor so much as raise his head
For fear he should disturb the sound he hears
Like a pain without a cry, where he listens.

I do not think I am fond, Father,
Of the way in which always before he listens
He prepares himself by listening. It is
Unequal, Father, like the reason
For which the wheel turns, though there is no wheel.

I speak of him, Father, because he is
There with his hands in his pockets, in the end
Of the garden listening to the turning
Wheel that is not there, but it is the world,
Father, that I do not understand.

highlighted
at the press

Help Publish HERE: POEMS FOR THE PLANET

Our planet is in crisis. As readers, publishers, and writers, we must ask ourselves: In this pivotal moment, what is our role? 

Here: Poems for the Planet answers this question through poetry and a practical guide to activism, inviting readers to get inspired—literally, take in a new breath—and then take action. Here includes poems from more than 125 voices including U.S. Poet Laureates, Pulitzer Prize-winners, and youth poets; a foreword from His Holiness the Dalai Lama; and a 37-page guide from the Union of Concerned Scientists. It will be published on Earth Day in 2019, with your help.

To make a donation, or for more information, contact George Knotek, Co-Publisher, at george@coppercanyonpress.org.

readings and events
facebook
 
reader's reviews
Robin Toews reviews
In Search of Small Gods

by Jim Harrison

I love these poems of the nature of self: of dog friends and curious birds and timelessness. I will read them again and again.

post your own comment
Privacy & Security   Conditions of Use   Help   Author Login   Contact Us   877.501.1393    © 2019 Copper Canyon Press    Website by Golden Lasso