November Idyll: After the still life
by David Lee
(from Orion Magazine, November/December 2007)
Above the grain field stubble
a lift of cranes
like a great table cloth
“The poet’s job is to somehow find a way to capture the eternal from the transitory, from the effervescent. I’m thinking here of Heraclitus: you can’t put your foot in the same river twice. Like the historian’s, our job is to put it in once and find out exactly what the river is at that moment. Pound says that we write not about water, but about the pattern inside the water, That liquid and rushing crystal beneath the knees of the gods and all of that. We’re supposed to snatch the moment out of time, somehow find the crystal inside that liquid and rushing moment.” –David Lee.