All the Difficult Hours and Minutes

By Jane Hirshfield b. 1953 Jane Hirshfield
All the difficult hours and minutes
are like salted plums in a jar.
Wrinkled, turn steeply into themselves,
they mutter something the color of  sharkfins to the glass.
Just so, calamity turns toward calmness.
First the jar holds the umeboshi, then the rice does.

Source: Poetry (May 2008).

MORE FROM THIS ISSUE

This poem originally appeared in the May 2008 issue of Poetry magazine

May 2008
 Jane  Hirshfield

Biography

Award-winning poet, essayist, and translator Jane Hirshfield is the author of several collections of verse, including Come, Thief (2011), After (2006), shortlisted for the T.S. Eliot prize, and Given Sugar, Given Salt (2001), a finalist for the National Book Critics Award, among others. Hirshfield has also translated the work of early women poets in collections such as The Ink Dark Moon: Poems by Ono no Komachi and Izumi . . .

Continue reading this biography

Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Living, Time & Brevity

Report a problem with this poem


Your results will be limited to content that appeared in Poetry magazine.

Search Every Issue of Poetry

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.