Ted Kooser, “Pocket Poem”


If this comes creased and creased again and soiled
as if I’d opened it a thousand times
to see if what I’d written here was right,
it’s all because I looked too long for you
to put in your pocket. Midnight says
the little gifts of loneliness come wrapped
by nervous fingers. What I wanted this
to say was that I want to be so close
that when you find it, it is warm from me.

– – –

For KA – who showed me this beautiful little poem in the first place.

Japanese Songs
Les Murray, “The Quality of Sprawl”
  • I really love it. It speaks so eloquently to the nervousness that accompanies love – and writing. Folding and unfolding the poem over and over again to see if it’s written right – that’s something that hits me hard.

    And I love it in a technical way for its efficiency – poets have a tendency to be so damn wordy that I have to respect a poem like this that says so, so much with so little.

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