I found this beautiful poem tucked into page 64 of the latest edition of The New Yorker. It’s written by Professor Lawrence Raab, who has his seventh collection of poems, “The History of Forgetting” coming out in June.

It’s 100 words, and one lovely minute. Click below the fold and enjoy.


 

 

THE POEM THAT CAN’T BE WRITTEN

is different from the poem

that is not written, or the many

 

that are never finished—those boats

lost in the fog, adrift

 

in the windless latitudes,

the charts useless, the water gone.

 

In the poem that cannot

be written there is no danger,

 

no ponderous cargo of meaning,

no meaning at all. And this

 

is its splendor, this is how

it becomes an emblem,

 

not of failure or loss,

but of the impossible.

 

So the wind rises. The tattered sails

billow, and the air grows sweeter.

 

A green island appears.

Everyone is saved.

Lawrence Raab

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