FOREWORD. As I'm writing this, I'm sitting on a plane, where screens in the backs of seats compete with screens in hands. A plane was once a quiet place for reading or dozing, a liminal space where conversations among strangers were somehow permitted, and--because of the improbability of seatmates meeting again--might grow probing and intimate. A plane, then, was sometimes a place of reflection, of connection. And perhaps sometimes it still is. But all I see today are screens, screens, screens.
1. Poetry is not a frippery. It's a useful--even utilitarian--salve for what ails us. It is not the right salve for everyone, but it's right for some, and at times in its history, for very many. If it's right for you, you will know it. When you hear the right poem, you will feel its rightness.