Because of our human bond in feeling, the narrative of an individual in a poem can be the narrative of all. If a poem effectively addresses an experience of joy or suffering it may resonate with the reader, easing a depth of loneliness, not possible in the instant communications of social media. Emily Bronte's poem which begins: " Cold in the earth, and the deep snow piled above thee!" concludes with her not wishing to follow her "Sweet Love of youth" into the grave or to indulge in "Memories rapturous pain:/ Once drinking deep of that divinest anguish,/ How could I seek the empty world again?"
In response to a question at a recent reading about admired poets, I mentioned the poet William Bronk. I first heard the name many years ago in a conference with my teacher Laurence Perrine, author of the widely used text Sound and Sense. He found Bronk's work exceptional as did the acclaimed poet Peter Kane Dufault whom I met much later. The poems have a remarkable music, their abstractions resonant. One absorbs an insight. In his poem "Frailty" (from Living Instead, 1991), treating our desire for "mastery," he concludes: "Yet the frail world goes on/ unmastered, unmastering, and so do we./ Better to love us both the way we are."
Neva Herrington is a poet and former educator. She is currently working on a new book of poetry, a collection of short stories, and her memoir. Her inspiration comes from her own experience and the work of other poets.