Friday, July 06, 2018

Poetry Friday: What is Home?

In 2012, I posted the Wislawa Szymborska poem "The Joy of Writing."  Here's the beginning of it:


Why does this written doe bound through these written woods?
For a drink of written water from a spring
whose surface will xerox her soft muzzle?
Why does she lift her head; does she hear something?
Perched on four slim legs borrowed from the truth,
she pricks up her ears beneath my fingertips.
Silence — this word also rustles across the page
and parts the boughs
that have sprouted from the word “woods.”

(Read the rest here.)

Last month in the Poem-a-Day email from, I read Maggie Smith's poem "Written Deer," responding to Szymborska's poem.   Click through to read the whole thing, but I'm mostly fixating on the last stanza, which ends like this:

What is home but a passage
I'm writing and underlining every time I read it.

I'm away from home right now, and that always makes me think more about home and what it is and isn't.  I like the idea that it's a passage I'm writing and underlining.  Maybe I'll write my own poem about that.  

In the meantime, check out the roundup here to see what other people have posted this week for Poetry Friday.  


Tabatha said...

That would be marvelous if you wrote a poem responding to Maggie Smith's response poem! Thanks for sharing these. Hope you enjoy your time away!

Linda B said...

Contemplating other writers' thought about writing can make us pause and wonder about our own ideas, as you've shown, Ruth. I love this and all you share as you make your own way, at home and away! Enjoy your journey wherever you are!

Molly Hogan said...

Both of these poems are wonderful and now you have me thinking about writing and about home in new ways. Thanks!

Kay said...

I love the interaction between these two poems. I hope you will add your voice to the conversation they've started.

Michelle Kogan said...

I love this part of Maggie Smith's response poem, "What is home but a book we write, then
read again & again, each time dog-earing" thanks for the poems, and happy journeys!