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Failing and Flying - Jack Gilbert





About Gilbert's work, the poet James Dickey said, "He takes himself away to a place more inward than is safe to go; from that awful silence and tightening, he returns to us poems of savage compassion." Savage compassion! right. Is that what is needed? Gilbert’s poems are often takes on love, and being broken, or being alone. I love this poem because like Hoagland’s poem that I shared a few days before, it does not shy away from the experience of anxiety, depression - the void of a “failure”. But it is social conditioning that defines failure. In an outward facing world, where curation is everything, and the image precedes reality, Gilberts reminds us of the rawness of facing ourselves, and being generous with our efforts.


Jack Gilbert is a poet for our time. Poetly loves him. Because of his uncompromising vision and critical relevance, we will be sharing more of his work in the future :)

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