To This May
They know so much more now about
the heart we are told but the world
still seems to come one at a time
one day one year one season and here
it is spring once more with its birds
nesting in the holes in the walls
its morning finding the first time
its light pretending not to move
always beginning as it goes
Copper Canyon Press, 2007
There's something so gentle and rhythmical and profound about WS Merwin's poem. I hope you enjoy it. And once you have, try the following exercise:
1. Write out the poem leaving a free line between each one.
2. Write your own lines between each of Merwin's lines, and one at the end, that link to the one before and the one after. You might have to change some syntax, fiddle with tenses etc.
3. You should end up with an 18 line poem that makes some kind of sense!
4. Leave it to one side for a few days before looking back over it to see if you think there's a poem worth keeping. Or a poem that's asking to be released.