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Saturday, January 23, 2021

His Life's Vocation

 “I have never separated the writing of poetry from prayer. I have grown up believing it is a vocation, a religious vocation.” – Derek Walcott

Born on the Caribbean island of Saint Lucian on this date in 1930, Walcott was a poet and playwright who won the 1992 Nobel Prize in Literature.  

The University of Alberta’s (Canada) first distinguished scholar in residence (for writing), he also served from 2010-13 as Professor of Poetry at the University of Essex (England).  He was named for the Griffin Trust For Excellence in Poetry Lifetime Recognition Award in 2015.  For Saturday’s Poem, here is Walcott’s, 


Love After Love


The time will come
when, with elation
you will greet yourself arriving
at your own door, in your own mirror
and each will smile at the other's welcome,

and say, sit here. Eat.
You will love again the stranger who was your self.
Give wine. Give bread. Give back your heart
to itself, to the stranger who has loved you

all your life, whom you ignored
for another, who knows you by heart.
Take down the love letters from the bookshelf,

the photographs, the desperate notes,
peel your own image from the mirror.
Sit. Feast on your life.




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