After Reading a Linda Pastan Poem

— Christine Richardson

This is not a large poem
     with the wing span of a condor.
Nor the kind one slips under a microscope
     like a blue bottle fly to see
          its beauty and complexity.
This poem does not march down the page.
     It is not a parade of decorated Chinese
          soldiers kicking up one high-booted
     word after another.

No, this poem is a swan on a wooded lake.
     It glides across the placid page
          effortlessly it seems.
It leaves a wake.

And you, dear reader, must be a fish.
     to see what propels it forward
          and note with not a little envy
     how its black patent shoes tap dance
through one world
and the whole of its body
     rises into the next.

One thought on “After Reading a Linda Pastan Poem

  1. I like this so much. The shaping is intricate, and draws attention.Pushpa says the title is a "kicker," but I love the kicker of your conclusion, the way the fish (bound to one realm) sees the way the bird lives in two, and the "air," is the next, not just another. There’s where your philosophy or mysticism is hidden. Beautiful.

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