William Stafford

(January 17, 1914 – August 28, 1993 / Kansas)

Quotations

  • ''At noon in the desert a panting lizard
    waited for history, its elbows tense,
    watching the curve of a particular road
    as if something might happen.''
    William Stafford (1914-1941), U.S. poet. At the Bomb Testing Site (l. 1-4). . . The Darkness Around Us Is Deep; Selected Poems. Robert Bly, ed. (1993) HarperCollins.
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  • ''a doe, a recent killing;
    she had stiffened already, almost cold.
    I dragged her off she was large in the belly.''
    William Stafford (1914-1941), U.S. poet. Traveling through the Dark (l. 6-8). . . The Darkness Around Us Is Deep; Selected Poems. Robert Bly, ed. (1993) HarperCollins.
  • ''around our group I could hear the wilderness listen.''
    William Stafford (1914-1941), U.S. poet. Traveling through the Dark (l. 16). . . The Darkness Around Us Is Deep; Selected Poems. Robert Bly, ed. (1993) HarperCollins.

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Returned To Say

When I face north a lost Cree
on some new shore puts a moccasin down,
rock in the light and noon for seeing,
he in a hurry and I beside him

It will be a long trip; he will be a new chief;
we have drunk new water from an unnamed stream;
under little dark trees he is to find a path
we both must travel because we have met.

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