Welcome to the month of December here at Poetry Paradise!
This is the month of candy canes, toy soldiers, and the beautiful Sugar Plum Fairy.
It is also the time of year that many of us spend lots of time with a favorite gadget. Whether your prefernce is cheering along with your favorite football team or watching replays of "Its a Wonderful Life", chances are you are doing it through the miracle of television.
So it is for that reason that I searched and found for you dear readers here at Poetry Paradise, a thought provoking poem about mans best friend
(you only thought it was a dog!)
Not a "window on the world"
But as we call you,
A box a tube
Terrarium of dreams and wonders.
Coffer of shades, ordained
Cotillion of phosphors
Or liquid crystal
Homey miracle, tub
Of acquiescence, vein of defiance.
Your patron in the pantheon would be Hermes
Quick one, little thief, escort
Of the dying and comfort of the sick,
In a blue glow my father and little sister sat
Snuggled in one chair watching you
Their wife and mother was sick in the head
I scorned you and them as I scorned so much
Now I like you best in a hotel room,
Before I have to face an audience: behind
The doors of the armoire, box
Within a box—Tom & Jerry, or also brilliant
And reassuring, Oprah Winfrey.
Thank you, for I watched, I watched
Sid Caesar speaking French and Japanese not
Through knowledge but imagination,
His quickness, and Thank You, I watched live
Jackie Robinson stealing
Home, the image—O strung shell—enduring
Fleeter than light like these words we
Remember in, they too winged
At the helmet and ankles.
The above poem is the work of Robert Pinsky,(born October 20, 1940)he is an American poet, essayist, literary critic, and translator. From 1997 to 2000, he served as Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress(the only writer to have been named to three terms). Pinsky is the author of nineteen books, most of which are collections of his own poetry. His published work also includes critically acclaimed translations, including a collection of poems by Czesław Miłosz and Dante Alighieri. He teaches at Boston University.
In reading about Pinsky as a poet, I kept seeing his work referred to as having a musicality to it. His writing has been described as "poetry jazz" for the literary. I personally enjoyed the way he begins to describe something and then just keeps going on and on with his description until as the reader, you can visualize the room the TV is in, the viewers watching it, the programs being watched and so on. He spans his topic like a bridge does water and uses imagery to take us across to the other side. I was intrigued by this sentence especially " patron in the pantheon would be Hermes"
Hermes, the messenger god, the god of science and invention, but who also lead people to Hades, and wasn't he the god of trickery too and cunning?
What do you think he is referring to?
Actually, we are not the first ones to wonder that very thing. I found an interview where he was asked that very question that we are considering now. Here is his answer:
ROBERT PINSKY: Trickery, cunning, speed. You tell me which one's a part of television. And he was also the comforter of the sick and he escorted the dying, and as we all, many of us, know if you go into a hostel, a hospice, or a place where very sick people are cared for, there's often a television on and human voices and emotion are a comfort."
Was that your take? Was yours different? Mine was! What a great conversation could be had around this point!
Truly, the mark of good poetry must be taking a subject no matter how common or mundane (like a TV) and elevating it to a conversation about life, death, and Greek mythology.
I highly recommend this writer and his books which are available at
That's all for this week folks, be sure to check in through the week for all our wonderful reviews here at Bluebell and I will see each of you soon for another poetry review!