Poem of the Week

Pastoral

By William Carlos Williams

When I was younger
it was plain to me
I must make something of myself.
Older now
I walk back streets
admiring the houses
of the very poor:
roof out of line with sides
the yards cluttered
with old chicken wire, ashes,
furniture gone wrong;
the fences and outhouses
built of barrel staves
and parts of boxes, all,
if I am fortunate,
smeared a bluish green
that properly weathered
pleases me best of all colors.
No one
will believe this
of vast import to the nation.

I have to say I’m not so sure about this one. I used to look at things as the poet does, but now I realize that I should be careful about romanticizing poverty. How do the residents like this neighborhood? Did he talk with them?

1 thought on “Poem of the Week

  1. Pingback: Poem of the Week | Xingu, Volume 2

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