Monday, October 25, 2010

Japanese Poetry on the Evening Train

The poems in the Japanese poetry anthology (see previous post) made me remember the late poems from Denise Levertov in Evening Train. The shorter poems here often have the succinct nature imagery and the "aha!" moments  (no, not the swedish band A-Ha) that the Japanese poetry favors.  Here, for example is "Idyll."

The neighbor's Black Labrador, his owners
out at work, unconscious anyone
is watching him, rises again and again
on hind legs to bend with his paws
the figtree's curving branches
and reach the sweet figs with his black lips.

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