American Life in Poetry: Column 182
BY TED KOOSER, U.S. POET LAUREATE
Poetry has often served to remind us to look more closely, to see what may have been at first overlooked. Today's poem is by Kaelum Poulson of Washington state. A middle school student and already accomplished maker of poems, he writes of the thankless toils of an unlikely but entirely necessary member of our communitythe crow!
but often unseen
a maid of nature
the street cleaner that’s everywhere
so elegant in a way no one sees
but without it we would
be in trash up to our knees
with the heart of a lion
the mind of a fox
the color of the night sky
the unpaid workman
that helps in every way
each and every day
We do not accept unsolicited submissions. American Life in Poetry is made possible by The Poetry Foundation (www.poetryfoundation.org), publisher of Poetry magazine. It is also supported by the Department of English at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Poem copyright © by Seattle Arts & Lectures. Reprinted from “The Universal Controversial Hive: poems, stories, & memoirs by students,” Writers in the Schools, 2006, by permission of the publisher. Introduction copyright © 2020 by The Poetry Foundation. The introduction's author, Ted Kooser, served as United States Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress from 2004-2006.