Biography of Jane Kenyon
Jane Kenyon Poems
Having It Out With Melancholy
1FROM THE NURSERY When I was born, you waited
I got out of bed on two strong legs. It might have been otherwise. I ate
Let Evening Come
Let the light of late afternoon shine through chinks in the barn, moving up the bales as the sun moves down.
There's just no accounting for happiness, or the way it turns up like a prodigal who comes back to the dust at your feet having squandered a fortune far away.
Briefly It Enters, And Briefly Speaks
I am the blossom pressed in a book, found again after two hundred years. . . . I am the maker, the lover, and the keeper. . . .
We lie back to back. Curtains lift and fall, like the chest of someone sleeping. Wind moves the leaves of the box elder;
The dog has cleaned his bowl and his reward is a biscuit, which I put in his mouth like a priest offering the host.
The Blue Bowl
Like primitives we buried the cat with his bowl. Bare-handed we scraped sand and gravel back into the hole.
Notes From The Other Side
I divested myself of despair and fear when I came here. Now there is no more catching
February: Thinking Of Flowers
Now wind torments the field, turning the white surface back on itself, back and back on itself, like an animal licking a wound.
Finding A Long Gray Hair
I scrub the long floorboards in the kitchen, repeating the motions of other women who have lived in this house.
All day the blanket snapped and swelled on the line, roused by a hot spring wind.... From there it witnessed the first sparrow, early flies lifting their sticky feet,
Twilight: After Haying
Yes, long shadows go out from the bales; and yes, the soul must part from the body: what else could it do?
Christ has been done to death in the cold reaches of northern Europe a thousand thousand times. Suddenly bread
The dog has cleaned his bowl
and his reward is a biscuit,
which I put in his mouth
like a priest offering the host.
I can't bear that trusting face!
He asks for bread, expects
bread, and I in my power
might have given him a stone.