The Trouble With Poetry by Billy Collins

21 Apr

The Trouble With Poetry

The trouble with poetry, I realized as I walked along a beach one night–
Cold Florida sand under my bare feet, a show of stars in the sky–

The trouble with poetry is
that it encourages the writing of more poetry, more guppies crowding the fish tank, more baby rabbits hopping out of their mothers into the dewy grass.

And how will it ever end?
Unless the day finally arrives when we have compared everything in the world to everything else in the world,

and there is nothing left to do
but quietly close our notebooks and sit with our hands folded in our desks.

Poetry fills me with joy
and I rise like a feather in the wind.
Poetry fills me with sorry
an I shrink like a chain flung from a bridge.

but mostly poetry fills me
with the urge to write poetry,
to sit in the dark and wait for a little flame to appear at the tip of my pencil.

And along with that, the longing to steal, to break into the poems of others
with a flashlight and a ski mask.

And what an unmerry band of thrives we are, cut-purses, common shoplifters, I thought to myself as a cold wave swirled around my feet
and the lighthouse moved its megaphone over the sea,
which is an image I stole directly from Lawrence Ferlinghetti-to be perfectly honest for a moment–

the bicycling poet of San Francisco
whose little amusement park of a book
I carried in a side pocket of my uniform
up and down the treacherous halls of high school.

By Billy Collins

Advertisements

2 Responses to “The Trouble With Poetry by Billy Collins”

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Reading Billy Collins « Paucis Verbis - April 23, 2012

    […] The Trouble With Poetry by Billy Collins (tommuellerbooks.com) […]

  2. POETRY AND POCKETS! « PM27's Blog - April 24, 2012

    […] The Trouble With Poetry by Billy Collins (tommuellerbooks.com) […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: