Poet Louise Gluck was just named poet laureate of the US. A student of Stanley Kunitz, the 60-year old Gluck gave several readings for the Academy of American Poets when I worked there as a 20 year old aspiring writer, back in the day and on the heels of Kathy Norris. Like James Wright, another of my favorite poets, Gluck’s work–and her persona–had an undercover of sadness that always impressed me but also gave me pause.
Fish bones walked the waves off Hatteras.
And there were other signs
That Death wooed us, by water, wooed us
By land: among the pines
An uncurled cottonmouth that rolled on moss
Reared in the polluted air.
Birth, not death, is the hard loss.
I know. I also left a skin there.
Copyright © 1987 Louise Glück