On Reading Poetry

How many poems are in the world?
One, two, many.
How many of them mean anything?
One, two, none;
they all mean everything.
We exhale, expire,
then inhale, inspire.
We die our death, distant, dark,
then work our words, wistful, wise,
and leave behind a set of letters,
structured, sound and certain,
to proclaim to the heavens —
if only through one set of eyes,
one attentive mind —
all of everything that was, is
and ever more could(n’t) be.
The poet is not the rarefied man,
the phantom distant in a crystal tower
constructing his fever dream on paper
hoping not to lose it all to a knock.
No, no, the poet is always at hand,
always behind every breath
(in and out, in and out)
living in every living spirit;
it is not wretchedness that hides the poet
but bounty, hoardings of every passing thing
and the surety that nothing could
go wrong. But it shall, always.
We see, then, the poet strike out,
throwing another poem onto page,
air, canvas, heart
and maybe, just maybe,
if we listen with eyes wide open
it will be for us and tell us
everything.

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