08 November 2012

Poetry Thursday - Wallace Stevens

In 1976, David Hockney created a portfolio of twenty etchings called The Blue Guitar: Etchings By David Hockney Who Was Inspired By Wallace Stevens Who Was Inspired By Pablo Picasso
This week's poem is one that I have encountered once or twice and rather disregarded. But the Poetry Daily daily website has an annual feature called "poets picks" where poems are chosen by contemporary poets to contemplate, dissect, and provide insight on. LS Klatt discussed this one, under the title "Where does poetry come from" -- which is such a good question!

"Of the Surface of Things" 
by Wallace Stevens (1879-1955)

In my room, the world is beyond my understanding,
But when I walk, I see that it consists of three or four hills and
   a cloud.

From my balcony, I survey the yellow air,
Reading where I have written,
‘The spring is like a belle undressing.’

The gold tree is blue.
The singer has pulled his cloak over his head.
The moon is in the folds of the cloak.

(Wallace Stevens spent most of his life working as an executive for an insurance company. Where, indeed, does poetry come from?)

1 comment:

Sandra Wyman said...

I'm enjoying your poetry posts - hadn't come across this one, though The Blue Guitar became one of my favourites after hearing an interview with David Hockney in which he read it.