Jane Kenyon

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Jane Kenyon Poems

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.

Having It Out With Melancholy


When I was born, you waited


I got out of bed
on two strong legs.
It might have been
otherwise. I ate

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. . . .

Jane Kenyon Comments

Karen Hill 15 April 2018

I remembered this poem, Let Evening Come, when I heard that a dear friend's mother had passed at 98 years old, quietly in her bed, as her daughter was reading to her. This poet died at a relatively young age herself, and I admire the directness and deep feeling of her work. I am sending the poem to my friend.

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Fabrizio Frosini 15 December 2015

Bibliography: Jane Kenyon: Collected Poems (Graywolf Press,2005) A Hundred White Daffodils (Graywolf Press,1999) Otherwise: New and Selected Poems (Graywolf Press,1996) Constance (Graywolf Press,1993) Let Evening Come (Graywolf Press,1990) The Boat of Quiet Hours (Graywolf Press,1986) From Room to Room (Alice James Books,1978)

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Fabrizio Frosini 15 December 2015

(I.) Jane Kenyon (May 23,1947 – April 22,1995) was an American poet and translator. Her work is often characterized as simple, spare, and emotionally resonant. Kenyon was the second wife of poet, editor, and critic Donald Hall who made her the subject of many of his poems. Kenyon was born in 1947 in Ann Arbor, Michigan, and grew up in the Midwest. She earned a B.A. from the University of Michigan in 1970 and an M.A. in 1972. She won a Hopwood Award at Michigan. Also, while a student at the University of Michigan, Kenyon met the poet Donald Hall; though he was some nineteen years her senior, she married him in 1972, and they moved to Eagle Pond Farm, his ancestral home in Wilmot, New Hampshire. Kenyon was New Hampshire's poet laureate when she died Saturday April 22,1995 from leukemia. [Wikipedia]

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