Tradition

By Lorine Niedecker 1903–1970 Lorine Niedecker
I
The chemist creates
      the brazen
      approximation:
Life
      Thy will be done
      Sun


II
Time to garden
      before I
      die—
to meet
      my compost maker
      the caretaker
of the cemetery

Lorine Niedecker, “Tradition” from Collected Works, edited by Jenny Penberthy, Copyright © 2002 Regents of the University of California. Published by University of California Press.

Source: Collected Works (University of California Press, 2004)

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Poet Lorine Niedecker 1903–1970

POET’S REGION U.S., Midwestern

SCHOOL / PERIOD Objectivist

Subjects Arts & Sciences, Living, Death, Humor & Satire

 Lorine  Niedecker

Biography

Niedecker's verse is praised for its stark, vivid imagery, subtle rhythms, and spare language, which Kenneth Cox described as "whittled clean." Concerned with the distillation of images and thoughts into concise expression, Niedecker described her work as a "condensery," and several critics have compared her poetry to the delicate yet concrete verse of Chinese and Japanese writers. Although Niedecker's long correspondence with

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Arts & Sciences, Living, Death, Humor & Satire

POET’S REGION U.S., Midwestern

SCHOOL / PERIOD Objectivist

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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