a poem

Shift by Kay Ryan

Words have loyalties
to so much
we don’t control.
Each word we write
rights itself
according to poles
we can’t see; think of
magnetic compulsion
or an equal stringency.
It’s hard for us
to imagine how small
a part we play in
holding up the tall
spires we believe
our minds erect.
Then North shifts,
buildings shear,
and we suspect.


from the 16th and current poet laureate, i’m a big fan. this poem is from her newest collection the best of it.

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