Eating Poetry* (VIII) – Our Other History

by A. Jay Adler on January 23, 2010
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From The Great World by David Malouf:




He was speaking of poetry itself, of the hidden part it played in their lives… How it spoke up, not always in the plainest terms, since that wasn’t always possible, but in precise ones just the same, for what is deeply felt and might otherwise go unrecorded: all those unique and repeatable events, the little sacraments of daily existence, movements of the heart and intimations of the close but inexpressible grandeur and terror of things, that is our other history, the one that goes on, in a quiet way, under the noise and chatter of events and is the major part of what happens each day in the life of the planet, and has been from the very beginning. To find words for that; to make glow with significance what is usually unseen, and unspoken too – that, when it occurs, is what binds us all, since it speaks immediately out of the centre of each one of us; giving shape to what we too have experienced and did not till then have words for, though as soon as they are spoken we know them as our own.

(H/T normblog)

*Ink runs from the corners of my mouth
There is no happiness like mine.
I have been eating poetry.

~Mark Strand, “Eating Poetry,” Reasons for Moving, 1968


1 comment

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L.L. Barkat January 23, 2010 at 6:51 pm

I love poetry. Such a simple pleasure for me. And your line, of all the lines at nAncY’s place, stood out (“to the pitch of a truth I tell.”)

I had to go find the person who wrote it… and that person turned out to be you.

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