National Poetry Month is the perfect month for an author like Beth Kephart to launch her next book. Her poetic prose reads like poetry, with each carefully selected word pregnant with meaning. Readers of Kephart know that her writing is deep and meaningful, and that they must read her words with reverence. This month, Beth Kephart and Chronicle Books launched Going Over, a young adult novel about 1983 Berlin and two families separated by the Berlin Wall, about taking risks, about love, and about inner strength. Feel free to check out my review.
Today, Beth Kephart has come to celebrate National Poetry Month with us, and she’s going to share with us a never before seen or published poem about writing.
Portrait Gallery My mind off its leash, I wander The streets at night, after a storm. Riffling scenes from ambered windows, Incidents you could name paintings by: Old Man in Plaid Cat on Sill Woman Loosening Auburn Braids Boy Lit Blue by Fluorescence And somewhere a catastrophe with a trash can And a dog dragging its chain, A guzzle in the drains, While overhead the squirrels humiliate themselves Among greasy limbs and leaves. Save me From my thoughts, I think. Keep me innocent as a thief in the dark Part of these washed-up streets. Where it’s only the deer and the squirrels And me, a dog dragging its chain. You’re a little whacky, he’d said, And I might have been exuberant With the praise, might have stressed, Myself to myself, that in the game Of being me, I’d won, but who Are we to measure our sanity by, And who walks the streets in the dark After a storm, looking for life Through the lit-up glass Of other people’s stories?
I want to thank Beth for sharing this poem with everyone this month, and I’d love to hear from you about what you think about the poem and what it means to you?