Monday, April 16, 2012

Staff Pick of the Week

April is National Poetry Month. So we're scouring the WVLC shelves for our favorite volumes of verse.

This week's pick is Dark Fields of the Republic: Poems 1991-1995 by Adrienne Rich

What Kind of Times Are These

There's a place between two stands of trees where the grass grows
and the old revolutionary road breaks off into shadows
near a meeting-house abandoned by the persecuted
who disappeared into those shadows.

I've walked there picking mushrooms at the edge of dread, but
don't be fooled,
this isn't a Russian poem, this is not somewhere else but here,
our country moving closer to its own truth and dread,
its own ways of making people disappear.

I won't tell you where the pace is, the dark mesh of the woods
meeting the unmarked strip of light---
ghost-ridden crossroads, leafmold paradise:
I know already who wants to buy it, sell it, make it disappear.

And I won't tell you where it is, so why do I tell you
anything? Because you still listen, because in times like these
to have you listen at all, it's necessary
to talk about trees.

This title, and others like it, can be found in the West Virginia Library Commission Reference Library.

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