From Delaware Online: (Oct 25) "Yet one of poetry’s many virtues,” she says, “is that it can fly both under and in full view of the radar. You read what’s on the page and you could think, sweet poem. But you read again and it’s raw, double-edged.”
I agree. The poem pats your cheek, then punches you in the gut. “Mystery and strangeness” is the great value of poetry, and all art that urges us to confront in our own terms what it means to be human. Art combats the de-humanizing forces in our lives, of which there are an overwhelming number.
I think about the hundreds of times the short poem “Western Wind” (by Anonymous) has both delivered me to myself and left me utterly bereft. I first fell down its rabbit hole decades ago.
And there’s this stealth bomber by the poet Issa, which arrives in the form of haiku:
New Year’s morning—
everything is in blossom!
I feel about average.