• Gary Hunter

Would you reach over a dead dog to pick up a poem? Nov. 9, 2022

With blueberries covered in yogurt, I plop down on the sofa, spread

the New York Times on the coffee table and start the drive down

the narrow vertical columns. There’s my usual double-gulped swallow

with the stock market report, a wince at the bombed-out desperation

of a Ukrainian family and after that, a series of man’s inhumanities

to humanity that I briefly skim over.

My purpose is only secondarily to be informed or wallow in sympathy

for a world falling apart, or cheer for something or someone that’s struggling

to stay alive and needs help. Why I really read the paper is to rescue an idea

or two that’s lying there, scoop’em up and lay them out on a plain piece of

paper, then begin their dissection and observation, right there between

the licked spoon and used napkin.

I do this quite often after breakfast, and I’m starting to wonder what price I’ve paid for my love of poetry.


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