from Stanzas in Meditation: Stanza 14

By Gertrude Stein 1874–1946 Gertrude Stein
She need not be selfish but he may add   
They like my way it is partly mine
In which case for them to foil or not please   
Come which they may they may in June.   
Not having all made plenty by their wish   
In their array all which they plan
Should they be called covered by which   
It is fortunately their stay that they may   
In which and because it suits them to fan
Not only not with clover but with may it matter   
That not only at a distance and with nearly   
That they ran for which they will not only plan   
But may be rain can be caught by the hills   
Just as well as they can with what they have   
And they may have it not only because of this   
But because they may be here.
Or is it at all likely that they arrange what they like.
Nohody knows just why they are or are not anxious   
While they sit and watch the horse which rests
Not because he is tired but because they are waiting
To say will they wait with them in their way   
Only to say it relieves them that they go away   
This is what they feel when they like it
Most of them do or which
It is very often their need not to be either
Just why they are after all made quickly faster   
Just as they might do.
It is what they did say when they mentioned it   
Or this.
It is very well to go up and down and look more   
Than they could please that they see where   
It is better that they are there

Gertrude Stein, Stanza XIV from Stanzas in Meditation and Other Poems (Los Angeles: Sun and Moon Press, 1994). Reprinted with the permission of
Mr. Stanford Gann Jr., Levin & Gann, P.A., Literary Executor of the Estate of Gertrude Stein.

Source: The Yale Gertrude Stein (Yale University Press, 1980)

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Poet Gertrude Stein 1874–1946


Subjects Relationships, Arts & Sciences, Language & Linguistics

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 Gertrude  Stein


From the time she moved to France in 1903 until her death in Neuilly-sur-Seine in 1946, American writer Gertrude Stein was a central figure in the Parisian art world. An advocate of the avant garde, Stein helped shape an artistic movement that demanded a novel form of expression and a conscious break with the past. The salon at 27 rue de Fleurus that she shared with Alice B. Toklas, her lifelong companion and secretary, became a . . .

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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