I am not always a poet.
But today I am a poet because
someone has to give a name
to this spring day and sing its praises.
You might ask,
“Do you have to be a poet
to give a name to this beautiful day
and sing its praises?”
“Yes,” I might respond.
“But I can deputize you.
You can be a deputy poet today.”
Then I would deputize you,
making you swear to tell the truth.
And you might say,
“Today is like a newborn opening its eyes
to see its mother for the first time
and to feel the warmth of her belly
and hear her strong heart
and rumbling contentment.”
“Yes,” I might say,
“Today is also like a completed song
that I’ve been struggling to weave
from frayed threads of melody
and scraps of lyrics,
and which has suddenly unfurled itself
like a tapestry of symphonic majesty.”
And you might smile and ask,
“Can I be a poet again tomorrow?”
And I would answer,
“Yes. Yes, of course you can.”
Justin O’Brien, Mineral Point