Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Poet Jane Kenyon, one of my favorites

One of my favorite poets is Jane Kenyon. I fell in love with her work the first time I read one of her poems in 1995. I bought her books, learned all about her. I related to her and her long walks with her dog, her illness, and her insomnia. When I learned she had died of leukemia in 1995, just as I had discovered her, I felt I had lost a friend. I grieved for my loss of a person I had come to care about even though I only knew her through her words. The following poem from her book, Let Evening Come , published by Graywolf Press in 1990, is one that is especially poignant to me at this time.
Let Evening Come

Let the light of late afternoon
shine through chinks in the barn, moving
up the bales as the sun moves down.

Let the cricket take up chafing as a woman takes up her needles
and her yarn. Let evening come.

Let dew collect on the hoe abandoned
in long grass. Let the stars appear
and the moon disclose her silver horn.

Let the fox go back to its sandy den.
Let the wind die down. Let the shed
go black inside. Let evening come.

To the bottle in the ditch, to the scoop
in the oats, to air in the lung
let evening come.

Let it come, as it will, and don't
be afraid. God does not leave us
comfortless, so let evening come.


Pat Workman said...

Glenda, I am so glad you shared this. Jane Kenyon is one of favorite poets too. I'm sure your heartfelt introduction to her beautiful poem made her spirit shine even brighter. Pat

Gay Moring said...

Glenda, this is such a beautiful poem. As usual, I'm playing catch-up on your blog, but wanted to thank you for introducing me to this poet. I hope you will share her books with me when I see you Monday.


Glenda C. Beall said...

Thanks, Pat and Gay for reading this poem and for your comment.
I have her books, Gay and I'll be happy to share them.
Pat, I'm glad you like Jane Kenyon. Her poetry books are special to me and I feel such a connection to her.