On this last day of January, here’s a selection from a new book, Ask Me: 100 Essential Poems by William Stafford, edited by Kim Stafford. Kim was asked by Graywolf Press to select one hundred essential poems for his father’s one hundredth birthday.
This image is from The Friends of William Stafford website. What a fabulous way to introduce a new generation of readers to William Stafford.
Poetry Friday is held at The Miss Rumphius Effect. Thanks, Trisha.
Jone, I am a fan of Stafford–thanks for telling me about Kim’s book! I especially love:
“…If great people/ get distracted by fame they forget/ this essential kind of breathing/ and they die inside their gold shell.”
I like the section about great people and I like the end–“how to succeed by daily calculation. I can’t eat that bread.” I can’t either.
Sometimes when I read poems like these, I am so in awe, Jone. How can I begin to write like that? I guess one word at a time! This is so lovely, the thought of poetry helping us to live. Thank you!
I guess there’s room on my shelf for just one more poetry book, isn’t there?!?
I hear William Stafford speak at NCTE long ago. It is one of my treasured memories. All the chairs were filled and I got a floor seat right up front. No better way to appreciate the master than by literally sitting at his feet!