Walt Whitman in White Snow

Currently tucked into the driven snow on the eastern side of Long Island reading “The Road Washes Out in Spring — A Poet’s Memoir of Living Off the Grid ” — about one fourth of the way in — and am enthralled, meditative, attuned, and simply feeling extremely romantic about places I’ve never lived and the faint strains of those places in my own abode, which is why we took the man into the yard for a quick minute to run through the tundra (above).  But lo, I am too much of this world to leave it…

Two excerpts to tempt you to dive into Baron Wormser’s book:

“As for poetry, after the sporadic schoolroom encounters are over, it takes no particular effort to live one’s life and forget that it even exists.  In a city, you might see a poem on a poster in a bus or subway car.  You might hear a poem for two minutes on public radio.  Or you might be traveling in a car and be listening to the contemporary rock station, the talk radio station, the classical station, or the news station, or be talking on a phone to someone about what time you will be getting home or which brand of tortilla chips you should buy.  Poetry wants attentiveness, not distraction, and because it shows us pathways of emotion, it admonishes us that we can always feel more deeply.  Such an admonition may be hard to hear in the world science has created” (p. 30).

the-road-washes-out-in-spring-a-poets-memoir-of-living-off-the-grid-by-baron-wormser“We reaped a serious amount of scorn for our actions.  Our parents informed us that we were throwing away our educations, if not our lives, by going off to live on a dirt road.  They had labored to get ahead in this country.  They had put together savings accounts over decades and learned to play the stock market and invest in properties so that they could take vacations, buy big cars, and send their children to college.  They had believed that each generation materially improved on the previous one.  As we indulged a useless fantasy and rejected what they had striven to create, we were going backward.  In their calculating yet optimistic eyes, we were spoiled, callow youths who had read too many books, seen too many movies, and had far too many romantic notions” (p. 38).

–from The Road Washes Out in Spring — A Poet’s Memoir of Living Off the Grid by Baron Wormser


Elsewhere, on greatness (so far):

Collin Kelley

Reb Livingston

Jennifer Bartlett

Adam Fieled

Sandra Beasley (Done!)


AMY KING View All →

Amy King is the recipient of the 2015 Winner of the Women’s National Book Association (WNBA) Award. Her latest collection, The Missing Museum, is a winner of the 2015 Tarpaulin Sky Book Prize. She co-edited with Heidi Lynn Staples the anthology Big Energy Poets of the Anthropocene: When Ecopoets Think Climate Change. She also co-edits the anthology series, Bettering American Poetry, and is a professor of creative writing at SUNY Nassau Community College.

1 Comment Leave a comment

  1. A cinematographic masterpiece. It ranks with Fellini, Welles, or perhaps Mack Sennett. And the aesthetic tension that builds as the dark figure picks up White Walter . . . no, I’ve got it — it’s Bergman! Love to the two auteurs and their canine stars. A good use for this undesirable snow, I guess.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: