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Thursday, April 22, 2010

Last Poems of Denise Levertov

One of my community lent me a book called The Great Unknowing. the last poems of Denise Levertov. I must confess that I did not know this poet. I find some of her poems worth sharing. Here is a short one called
"Once Only":
All which, because it was
flame and song and granted us
joy, we thought we'd do, be, revisit,
turns out to have been what it was
that once, only; every initiation
did not begin
a series, a build-up: the marvelous
did happen in our lives, our stories
are not drab with its absence: but don't
expect now to return for more. Whatever more
there will be will be
unique as those were unique. Try
to acknowledge the next
song in its body-halo of flames as utterly
present, as now or never.

I think this is true, but we do need to relive those experiences that have given us and still give us joy. Sometimes, in the going back, the fire is rekindled and we are again in awe and wonder.

1 comment:

Kimberly said...


I agree with you on the reliving of experience... and think that the reliving fits with Levertov's idea... because in the reliving, it is a new experience too. We come to the event again, not as we were when it happened, but as we are when we desire to return which can add new dimension and perspective.

Looking forward to seeing you!