Poetry Friday: A Month of William Stafford

It’s January and I once again dedicate this month to William Stafford. It’s going to be a great month.
Return next Wednesday, as I have an interview with Kim Stafford, his son. But for today “An Oregon Message.”

An Oregon Message

When we first moved here, pulled
the trees in around us, curled
our backs to the wind, no one
had ever hit the moon—no one.
Now our trees are safer than the stars,
and only other people’s neglect
is our precious and abiding shell,
pierced by meteors, radar, and the telephone.

From our snug place we shout
religiously for attention, in order to hide:
only silence or evasion will bring
dangerous notice, the hovering hawk
of the state, or the sudden quiet stare
and fatal estimate of an alerted neighbor.

This message we smuggle out in
its plain cover, to be opened
quietly: Friends everywhere—
we are alive! Those moon rockets
have missed millions of secret
places! Best wishes.

Burn this.
William Stafford

A great place to see William Stafford’s revisions of many poems is at the William Stafford Archives

Poetry Friday is being held at Radio, Rhythm, and Rhyme. A big welcome to Matt, who is hosting his first ever Poetry Friday.

Happy Reading.