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" One touch of nature

makes all the world kin "

William Shakespeare

The Foundation of Poetry by Kim Stafford

October 8th, 2010

The Foundation of Poetry

In the debris of the damaged world
seek the foundation of poetry:
long touch of sunlight across cold ground.

How to find it? Dawn is one way
along East Colfax in your city where
a dream seeps from darkness: icon of the mind.

In the cry of a bird, whisper of a child, find
the foundation of forgiveness. Sip rain
before frenzy, after ambition.

The foundation of poetry lies hidden
behind the screen of shouting,
the veil of nonchalance.

Disguised in plain sight,
waiting for attentive need—
for the hungers of looking, listening.

In poetry, by the tender touch—
feather, mist, thought—
intermittent devotion may gather speed.

The fugitive nation may turn
to find home ground here. Find refuge,
beauty in broken things that are your own.

Poetry, the foundation: sunlight in the mind.

Kim Stafford