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A poem: I Hate by C.K. Williams

I watch a lot of performance poetry but I don't read enough.

This was shared and it just hit me. Hard. It's brilliant, beautiful and heartbreaking - and potentially one of the best things I've read. So I wanted to share:

I Hate
BY C. K. WILLIAMS
I hate how this unsummoned sigh-sound, sob-sound,
not sound really, feeling, sigh-feeling, sob-feeling,
keeps rising in me, rasping in me, not in its old disguise
as nostalgia, sweet crazed call of the blackbird;

not as remembrance, grief for so many gone,
nor either that other tangle of recall, regret
for unredeemed wrongs, errors, omissions,
petrified roots too deep to ever excise;

a mingling rather, a melding, inextricable mesh
of delight in astonishing being, of being in being,
with a fear of and fear for I can barely think what,
not non-existence, of self, loved ones, love;

not even war, fuck war, sighing for war,
sobbing for war, for no war, peace, surcease;
more than all that, some ground-sound, ground-note,
sown in us now, that swells in us, all of us,

echo of love we had, have, for world, for our world,
on which we seem finally mere swarm, mere deluge,
mere matter self-altered to tumult, to noise,
cacophonous blitz of destruction, despoilment,

din from which every emotion henceforth emerges,
and into which falters, slides, sinks, and subsides:
sigh-sound of lament, of remorse; sob-sound of rue,
of, still, always, ever sadder and sadder sad joy.

[Shared via the Poetry Foundation. Source: Poetry (January 2009)]


Written as part of Cassy Fry's DIYCreativeClub challenge. On the theme of poetry, head here for some I wrote and recorded this year - just giving it a go.

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