Primavera (Louise Glück)

Spring comes quickly: overnight
the plum tree blossoms,
the warm air fills with bird calls.

In the plowed dirt, someone has drawn a picture of
        the sun
with rays coming out all around
but because the background is dirt, the sun is black.
There is no signature.

Alas, very soon everything will disappear:
the bird calls, the delicate blossoms. In the end,
even the earth itself will follow the artist’s name into

Nevertheless, the artist intends
a mood of celebration.

How beautiful the blossoms are — emblems of the
        resilience of life.
The birds approach eagerly.

One thought on “Primavera (Louise Glück)

  1. shinichi Post author

    Poem: Primavera

    by Louise Glück

    In “Primavera,” Louise Glück’s fascination with both pastoral scenes and the devastation of loss coalesces in a vision of springtime somewhere, perhaps in a field, where “someone has drawn a picture of the sun.” No one has signed the image; the gesture is anonymous, just as the poet imagines every effort will be at the end of the world. Still, “the artist intends a mood of celebration.” Glück’s mode of lamentation was her signature, and it seems fitting that one of her poems occasions the end of this column, after nine years. The magazine is deeply indebted to its poetry editors — Natasha Trethewey, Matthew Zapruder, Terrance Hayes, Rita Dove, Naomi Shibab Nye, Reginald Dwayne Betts, Victoria Chang and Anne Boyer — for their work curating this column and celebrating the dynamism of life and language.


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