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Gathered here are a smattering of poems that I have written over the years, selected without rhyme or reason, a few of them published in various minor reviews, one of them, "Buzzards," anthologized in Important Words – A Book for Poets and Writers (Bill Brown and Malcolm Glass, eds. Boynton/Cook. 1991.). Because I have always been fascinated by form, I've arranged some of them that way. Others are gathered around my Spirit Animals. There's a grouping for some other birds I met along the way. There's a group of poems composed quickly while free-writing with the students in Poetry Making, a workshop I taught for many years at Princeton Day School. And finally, a grouping entitled "Any Little Form."**
Any Little Form**
** "When in doubt there is always form for us to go on with. Anyone who has achieved the least form to be sure of it, is lost to the larger excruciations.... The artist, the poet, might be expected to be the most aware of such assurance. But it is really everybody's sanity to feel it and live by it. Fortunately, too, no forms are more engrossing, gratifying, comforting, staying, than those lesser ones we throw off, like vortex rings of smoke, all our individual enterprise and needing nobody's cooperation: a basket, a letter, a garden, a room, an idea, a picture, a poem.... The background in hugeness and confusion shading away from where we stand into black and utter chaos; and against the background any small man-made figure of order and concentration... To me any little form I assert upon it is velvet, as the saying is, and to be considered for how much more it is than nothing."
— Robert Frost, "A Letter to The Amherst Student"
For the Birds
Poems for and with My Students