How poetry found me

Poems of magic and Spells sits on my bookshelf. I have owned this book since I was about eight years old.  This is the book that probably set me on the path of reading, writing, and loving poetry.  I look back at some of the poems from this book that I have loved and am surprised by some of my choices. Of course, I was a child, and can’t remember what brought me into a certain poem.  Give me them. No. is a phrase I still remember rom the Goblin poem. This dialogue in a magical forest resonates as a place where spells can happen, where poetry dances in the shadows. Yeats’ poem, The Stolen Child, was probably one of the first poems I memorized without meaning to, especially the chorus,

Come away o human child

to the water and the wild

with a faery hand in hand

for the world’s more full of weeping than you can understand.


The meter, rhyme, and chorus were magical to a child who whose parents were soon to be divorced in the days when divorce was rare.  I did feel alone as a child and the poems kept me company. I often would make up tunes for the poems. Poems were songs that needed musical voices.



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