Friday, September 16, 2011

Before the Great Troubling

Before the Great Troubling
by Corey Mesler

There were times of great clarity.
There were days when time
did not imprison, did not
glad-hand the devil.
And there was a feeling that this
would all go on, getting
better and better,
enriching us in ways we could never
foresee. This was the feeling
we lived under as if
it were shade.
There were times, before the great
troubling, when we
were happy to think the world vast
and shapeless, when
we were happy to call modernity
out host. This I remind myself
when it closes in.
This comforts somehow
as if in the past is the seed of a
future where I will
once again walk out into the dark-
ness as if it were my
best dream, as if it held things for me
that I would need, things
as particular and personal as a poem.

Corey Mesler is a gifted poet and fiction writer who also -- along with his wife, Cheryl -- owns a bookstore in Memphis. I interviewed Corey recently for Chapter 16, and he had fascinating things to say. You can read the Q&A here. The beautiful poem above is from his new collection by the same name, which is full of lovely, funny, smart stuff. Go here to order a copy.

Storm at Sea, Pieter Bruegel the Elder, 1569

Poem ©2011 by Corey Mesler. Used by permission. All rights reserved

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