I noticed a couple of days ago that poet Mark Strand had died. Although I’d like to, I don’t own every poetry anthology or poetry book, and I only have one of his poems in an anthology, so I was curious about Mark Strand’s work.
There is an intriguing reference to Strand’s interest in surrealist painters like Giorgio de Chirico and René Magritte in his page at Wikipedia. At one time he wanted to be an artist and received a Master’s degree in fine art, but somewhere he morphed into a poet. Mark Strand was born in Prince Edward Island and later moved to the States, and speaks of the nature surrounding his youthful home in many poems, the sea and fields of his childhood. He was also influenced by Wallace Stevens, one of my favourite poets. Strand was named US Poet Laureate in 1990 and won the Pulitzer Prize in 1999 for his collection Blizzard of One.
I picked a poem of his to go with today’s card.
PEACE – COVERED BY THE UNIVERSE
Imagine the days of childhood lying on the grass and cloud-gazing, thinking every cloud was a creature? Well, we can still imagine such things and in particular doves of peace surrounding us and knowing that peace is also inside us.
It is the sky of possibilities.
A PIECE OF THE STORM
for Sharon Horvath
From the shadow of domes in the city of domes,
A snowflake, a blizzard of one, weightless, entered your room
And made its way to the arm of the chair where you, looking up
From your book, saw it the moment it landed. That’s all
There was to it. No more than a solemn waking
To brevity, to the lifting and falling away of attention, swiftly,
A time between times, a flowerless funeral. No more than that
Except for the feeling that this piece of the storm,
Which turned into nothing before your eyes, would come back, That someone years hence, sitting as you are now, might say:
“It’s time. The air is ready. The sky has an opening.”