Sunday, November 26, 2006

Mark van Doren

Morning Worship

I wake and hearing it raining.Were I dead, what would I giveLazily to lie here,Like this, and live?Or better yet: birdsong,Brightening and spreading --How far would I come thenTo be at the world's wedding?Now that I lie, though,Listening, living,(Oh, but not forever,Oh, end arriving)How shall I praise them:All the sweet beingsEternally that outliveMe and my dying?Mountains, I mean; wind, water, air;Grass, and huge trees; clouds, flowers,And thunder, and night.Turtles, I mean, and toads; hawks, herons, owls;Graveyards, and towns, and trout; roads, gardens,Red berries, and deer.Lightning, I mean, and eagles; fences; snow;Sunrise, and ferns; waterfalls, serpents,Green islands, and sleep.Horses, I mean; butterflies, whales;Mosses, and stars and gravellyRivers, and fruit.Oceans, I mean; black valleys; corn;Brambles, and cliffs; rock, dirt, dust, ice;And warnings of flood.How shall I name them?And in what order?Each would be first.Omission is murder.Maidens, I mean, and apples; needles; leaves;Worms, and planers, and clover; whirlwinds; dew;Bulls; geese --Stop. Lie still.You will never be done.Leave them all there.Old lover. Live on. I think a lot of people have forgotten the power of Mark van Doren's poetry. After all, he won the Pulitzer Prize--quite an accomplishment for a poet! I wonder if anyone will read this blog and remember this wonderful American poet.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Recently an agent from California commented that there are a lot of debut novels out there, but unless you are famous or your fiction has been published in one of the major print magazines, there is little or no chance you will be published by a major publishing house. I don't know if that is entirely true, but I do know that after three years of attempting to get my work published, I have been met with nothing but rejections. I am not daunted by that fact, however. I know that the only way to finally get published is to keep writing and querying. It is a harsh world out there and not for the mild at heart.