Robert Penn Warren

You Keep Falling

Photo: Jake Rajs, "Cherry Blossom," Washington DC

Love Recognized
by Robert Penn Warren

There are many things in the world and you
Are one of them. Many things keep happening and
You are one of them, and the happening that
Is you keeps falling like snow
On the landscape of not-you, hiding hideousness, until
The streets and the world of wrath are choked with snow.

How many things have become silent? Traffic
Is throttled. The mayor
Has been, clearly, remiss and the city
Was totally unprepared for such a crisis. Nor
Was I yes, why should this happen to me?
I have always been a law abiding citizen.

But you, like snow, like love, keep falling,
And it is not certain that the world will not be
Covered in a glitter of crystalline whiteness.

Silence.


Robert Penn Warren reads his poem "Love Recognized"

Stillness at Birdcall

Grailville Retreat Center in Loveland, Ohio

Ornithology in a World of Flux
by Robert Penn Warren, from The Collected Poems of Robert Penn Warren

It was only a bird call at evening,
unidentified,
As I came from the spring with water,
Across the rocky back-pasture;
But I stood so still sky above was
not stiller than sky in pale-water.
Years past, all places and faces
fade, some people have died,
And I stand in a far land, the evening
still, and am at last sure
That I miss more that stillness at
birdcall than some things that
were to fail later.

[Thanks Rebecca Bradshaw!]