Ursula Le Guin says of her poetry –
My poems begin in two ways (that I am aware of) which I think of as “catching” and “following”. One is a desire to catch, hold, surround, describe the sight, the emotion, the vision, a passionate desire that forces the words into poetry. A longing to take hold, a long to make sense.
Or the words begin to make a rhythm, or grow out of a rhythm, coming of themselves and following their own logic, and lead the writing hand and the writer’s mind to follow them–halting or racing, amazed or bewildered–wherever they go. If they make sense, it comes as a gift, a discovery.
Here, her poem. For me it does both – and many other things as well –
We make too much history.
With or without us
there will be the silence
and the rocks and the far shining.
But what we need to be
is, oh, the small talk of swallows
in evening over
dull water under willows.
To be we need to know the river
holds the salmon and the ocean
holds the whales as lightly
as the body holds the soul
in the present tense, in the present tense.
From her book “Sixty Odd”, her fifth collection of poems; given to me by my late friend, Carole Gale, who gave me many gifts while alive….and still does.