Poet's Choice

By Robert Pinsky
Sunday, August 12, 2007

Charles Simic, newly appointed Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress, brings honor to the title. Simic's superb, engaging poetry is the opposite of bland or official. For example, here is a fairly recent Simic self-portrait:


A dog trying to write a poem on why he barks,

That's me, dear reader!

They were about to kick me out of the library

But I warned them,

My master is invisible and all-powerful.

Still, they kept dragging me out by the tail.

In the park the birds spoke freely of their own vexations.

On a bench, I saw an old woman

Cutting her white curly hair with imaginary scissors

While staring into a small pocket mirror.

I didn't say anything then,

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