Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Loving Jane...

When I think of Jane Kenyon and why I love her so much, though I have only discovered this since she has been gone from the Earth, I am not entirely sure. It seems it would have to do with her language, with the utter purity of her images and the sweet, hymnal intonations of her verse. Of course I first loved her language. What else have I to go on?

I never met her and have only ever corresponded with her husband, who forgives me the fact that his poetry is not my favorite because he knows that the poet whose work holds that position of favor is his late wife. Jane died at 44 when her husband was 66. Now, at 85, he writes back to me in all graciousness, though he is weary and must receive a great deal of mail from people such as myself, wondering about his great art, his great success and, like me, his fabulous wife of 23 years.

Today I read A Hundred White Daffodils and even while I try to read slowly, savor each delectable syllable, I am aware of the dwindling number of Jane's works that remain to be read by me. I will have to start again, from the top, when that happens. For now, I am at a church fair or in a garden. I climb Mount Washington and take the train down--or not.

I am with Jane and it is as if the two years that remain between this moment and the moment I turn 44, her age at her death, are all I have of her. It is a bit eerie to think like this, and I try to understand the source of such a sense, but it is lost in some notion of time and poetry and in an image of wild geese against blue sky.

No comments:

Post a Comment