I flipped open Annie Finch‘s A Poet’s Craft with another purpose in mind but I was stung by the title of chapter 2: “Poetry as Nourishment”.
In a way, it explains why I rail so against not finding what I want in poems. I need that nourishment.
As analogy, it also encourages me: try to enjoy new types of food.
Which brings me to Diane Ackerman’s “At Belingshausen, the Russian Base, Antarctica”.
Building materials, blue ice, even bulk paper: not edible.
And yet, in the end, it was edible, it was poetry that nourished me, half for what it was and half because I let myself like the brussel sprouts. [Note: I actually do like brussel sprouts; their choice just felt iconic.]
I could wish Ackerman’s poem was really a sonnet, instead of a fourteen-line piece. I could wish that the middle six lines rhymed in some, even slant, way. But it was tastier to decide that “oak” and “echoes” had rhyme possibility. And to let the need for rhyme go because I knew it was coming back at the ending. At the end, I was full of multiple interpretations of the conceit. At the end, the cherry on top was an oft-used sentiment presented fresh and crisp and full of music.