It's been a while since I've been able to participate in Poetry Friday, but Epiphany has me inspired today. I wrote an Epiphany poem this morning (still very much in rough draft) that I felt pretty good about until I read this stunning masterpiece by G.K. Chesterton.
Actually I'm kidding about how the Chesterton poem made me feel. Great art, while it may make our own art look a little pale and wobbly in contrast, does not diminish us. It expands and enriches and nourishes us -- all words I would definitely apply to how this poem affected me this morning. And in the end, a great poem that inspires me so deeply when I read it can only have a good influence on my own poetry-making. I know when I go back to that rough draft, I will have a whole other layer of imaginative humus to grow the poem in.
I do love this poem.
The Wise Men
~by G.K. Chesterton
Step softly, under snow or rain,
To find the place where men can pray;
The way is all so very plain
That we may lose the way.
Oh, we have learnt to peer and pore
On tortured puzzles from our youth,
We know all the labyrinthine lore,
We are the three wise men of yore,
And we know all things but truth.
...The rest of the poem can be found here. And the Poetry Friday roundup today is at Teaching Authors .