Reading Wallace

March 9th, 2011

I’m still reading a Wallace Stevens poem a day, usually at the end of the day though I enjoy it most fully on those rare occasions I get to it first thing in the morning before anybody else has begun to stir.┬áHis is an insistent intellect; I can feel him sometimes straining through the pages to tell me something, to express what Harold Bloom calls “that solitary and inward glory we can none of us share with others.” It is, in the end, inexpressible of course – I can no more truly convey to you what it means to be me than you can make me understand what it is to be you and yet here is Stevens trying, in poem after poem, to do just that. Here we all are, poets and writers and bloggers trying to shape words in some magical way so that they take on finally the form of the self so that I might share it with you. It is the endless project; endless because we must begin the endeavor new again each day, this quest to understand and be understood, and endless because we must all fall short. But we wake again and try again, and it is a noble project.