The Medium

By Robin Blaser 1925–2009 Robin Blaser
it is essentially reluctance  the language
a darkness, a friendship, tying to the real
but it is unreal

the clarity desired, a wish for true sight,
all tangling

‘you’ tried me, the everyday which
caught me, turning the house

in the wind, a lovecraft  the political
was not my business  I could not look

without seeing the decay, the shit poured
on most things, by indifference, the personal

power which is simply that,     demanding a friend
take dullness out of the world  (he doesn’t know
his lousy emptiness)                      I slept
in a fire    on my book bag, one dried wing

of a white moth     the story is of a man
who lost his way in the holy wood

because the way had never been taken without
at least two friends,  one on each side,

and I believe my dream said one of the others
always led     now left to acknowledge,

he can’t breathe, the darkness bled
the white wing,     one     of the body

of the moth that moved him, of the other
wing,     the language is bereft

Robin Blaser, “The Medium” 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)

Discover this poem’s context and related poetry, articles, and media.

Poet Robin Blaser 1925–2009


Subjects Living, Disappointment & Failure, Relationships, Friends & Enemies, Arts & Sciences

 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 . . .

Continue reading this biography

Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Living, Disappointment & Failure, Relationships, Friends & Enemies, Arts & Sciences


Report a problem with this poem

Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

This poem has learning resources.

This poem is good for children.

This poem has related video.

This poem has related audio.