Poem by the Charles River

By Robin Blaser 1925–2009 Robin Blaser
It is their way to find the surface
when they die.
                      Fish feed on fish
and drop those beautiful bones
                                              to swim.
I see them stretch the water to their need
as I domesticate the separate air to be my
            These fish die easily.

I find my surface in the way they feed.
Their gathering hunger is a flash like death.
No agony
               as if
                      my mind had eaten death.

Robin Blaser, “Poem by the Charles River” from The Holy Forest: Collected Poems of Robin Blaser. Copyright © 2006 by Robin Blaser.  Reprinted by permission of University of California Press.

Source: The Holy Forest: Collected Poems of Robin Blaser (University of California Press, 2006)

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Poet Robin Blaser 1925–2009


Subjects Living, Death, Nature, Seas, Rivers, & Streams, Animals, The Body

 Robin  Blaser


Born in Denver and raised in Twin Falls, Idaho, poet, editor, and essayist Robin Blaser was educated at the University of California-Berkeley. With poets Robert Duncan and Jack Spicer, he helped spark the Berkeley Poetry Renaissance in the 1940s that preceded the San Francisco poetry renaissance of the 1950s and 1960s. In 1965, Blaser met Robert Creeley and Charles Olson, with whom he later worked closely. Miriam Nichols, editor . . .

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SUBJECT Living, Death, Nature, Seas, Rivers, & Streams, Animals, The Body


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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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