Mark Doty

(10 August 1953 / Maryville, Tennessee)

Heaven For Stanley - Poem by Mark Doty

For his birthday, I gave Stanley a hyacinth bean,
an annual, so he wouldn't have to wait for the flowers.

He said, Mark, I have just the place for it!
as if he'd spent ninety-eight years

anticipating the arrival of this particular vine.

I thought poetry a brace against time,
the hours held up for study in a voice's cool saline,

but his allegiance is not to permanent forms.
His garden's all furious change,

budding and rot and then the coming up again;

why prefer any single part of the round?
I don't know that he'd change a word of it;

I think he could be forever pleased
to participate in motion. Something opens.

He writes it down. Heaven steadies
and concentrates near the lavender. He's already there.

Topic(s) of this poem: friend


Comments about Heaven For Stanley by Mark Doty

  • Robert Murray Smith (7/18/2017 12:23:00 AM)


    Not a high quality poem. It confirms my view that any old poem hits the spot for the administrators of this site. What criteria is used to decide the rating of this poet? I don't expect an answer. (Report) Reply

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  • Simone Inez Harriman (7/17/2017 10:13:00 PM)


    I have come back to read this a few times today and each time I have visited I have fallen for this beautiful poem.

    'but his allegiance is not to permanent forms.
    His garden's all furious change'

    And...

    'I think he could be forever pleased
    to participate in motion. Something opens.

    He writes it down. Heaven steadies
    and concentrates near the lavender. He's already there.

    So impressed by the movement and change images in your poem
    (Report) Reply

  • Edward Kofi Louis (7/17/2017 2:29:00 PM)


    Coming up again! Thanks for sharing. (Report) Reply

  • Rajnish Manga (7/17/2017 1:39:00 PM)


    His garden's all furious change,
    budding and rot and then the coming up again;
    I think he could be forever pleased.... // Beautifully articulated philosophy of life. Thanks.
    (Report) Reply

  • (7/17/2017 10:21:00 AM)


    There's nothing like wisdom and experience.Life may be repetitive but it also packs many surprises..a ten.. (Report) Reply

  • Bernard F. Asuncion (7/17/2017 3:01:00 AM)


    Reminds me of the song HEAVEN popularized by BRYAN ADAMS... Thanks for posting👍 (Report) Reply

  • (12/8/2014 7:45:00 AM)


    a fine piece, only a little blurringly built around the idea of healthy letting go. Anti-confessional. Avoids dull romantic yawp. (Report) Reply

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Poem Submitted: Monday, December 8, 2014



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