Hey, ya’ll. We’ve got a new Poet Laureate: Kay Ryan. I suppose a lot of people will be posting her stuff today, so I won’t do a big thing about her. I’ll just say that I haven’t read that much of her stuff yet, but what I’ve read so far I generally like. Some of it I really love. She’s got a sharp sort of wit, a coolly detached voice, and a deceptive brevity that seems more straightforward than it is. Here’s an example, “Full Measure:”
You will get your full measure.
But, as when asking fairies for favors,
there is a trick: it comes in a block.
And of course one block is not
like another. Some respond to water,
giving everything wet a little flavor.
Some succumb to heat like butter.
You can read the rest here. This poem is especially resonant with me right now. I’m one of those people who has a strong creative impulse, but so far hasn’t really found an expressive medium in which I feel confident. I’ve tried quite a few: dance, theatre, writing, photography, guitar… but I didn’t excel at any of them. So I feel like my block is still mostly untouched, just sitting there, waiting for me to figure out how to get at it.
It’s probably something I just wouldn’t expect. Like, découpage.
Anyway. Congrats to Kay Ryan: thanks for sharing your full measure with us.
The inimitable Kelly Fineman is handling this week’s round-up, bless her. Go see.