Thought for the Day
Almost anything you do in the garden, for example weeding, is an effort to create some sort of order out of nature's tendency to run wild. There has to be a certain degree of domestication in a garden. The danger is that you can so tame your garden that it becomes a thing. It becomes landscaping.
In a poem, the danger is obvious; there is a natural idiom and then there is domesticated language. The difference is apparent immediately when you sense everything has been subjugated, that the poet has tamed the language and the thought process that flows into a poem until it maintains a principle of order but nothing remains to give the poem its tang, its liberty, its force. Once the poem starts flowing, the poet must not try to dictate every syllable.
-Stanley Kunitz, from The Wild Braid: A Poet Reflects on a Century in the Garden (W.W. Norton & Company, Inc., 2005).
Stanley Kunitz was born on July 29, 1905.
Happy Birthday, Stanley.