Thursday, March 31, 2005

Robert Creeley (1926-2005)

Robert Creeley died yesterday in Odessa, Texas.

Sparks Street Echo

Flakes falling
out window make
no place, no place--

no faces, traces,
wastes of whatever
wanted to be--

was here
momently, mother,
was here.

From Selected Poems (1991)


Why poetry? Its materials are so constant, simple, elusive, specific. It costs so little and so much. It preoccupies a life, yet can only find one in living. It is a music, a playful construct of feeling, a last word and communion. I love it that these words, "made solely of air," as Williams said, have no owner finally to determine them. The English teacher all that time ago who said, "You must learn to speak correctly," was only wrong in forgetting to say why--for these words which depend upon us for their very existence fail as our usage derides or excludes them. They are no more right or wrong than we are, yet suffer our presumption forever.

From the Preface to Selected Poems (1991)

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