Two girls discover
the secret of life
in a sudden line of

I who don’t know the
secret wrote
the line. They
told me

(Through a third person)
they had found it
but not what it was
not even

what line it was. No doubt
by now, more than a week
later, they have forgotten
the secret,

the line, the name of
the poem. I love them
for finding what’ I can’t find,

and for loving me
for the line I wrote,
and for forgetting it
so that

a thousand times, till death
finds them, they may
discover it again, in other

in other
happenings. And for
wanting to know it,

assuming there is
such a secret, yes,
for that
most of all.

poem by Denise Leverton
image: Audrey Mabee

Where’s the wisdom? We’ve lost the information.” t.s. eliot

Author: kaytisweetlandrasmussen83

I am a retired fine arts teacher, sculptor/painter, writer, and a native Californian. I love my family,dogs, horses, movies, reading and music, probably in that order. I have been married forever to a very nice man who is nice to old ladies, dogs and children.

9 thoughts on “THE SECRET”

      1. She is. As are you in your way. That’s what’s so good about blogging – finding the great things that people contribute to others’ lives. šŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

  1. There’s a wonderful reality writers and theologians and artists talk about, called the “surplus of meaning.” Leverton’s poem points directly to it: even the writer doesn’t know, can’t control, what others will find in the words. The same goes for any art, of course.

    One of my readers recommended John Ciardi’s “How Does a Poem Mean?” to me. Ciardi takes head-on that silly question: “What does this poem mean?” There is no one meaning — even for the same person! We’re all finding,and losing, and forgetting and remembering, all the time. It’s the “how” that counts, far more than the “what.”


  2. I like “the surplus of meaning” it makes sense. Even to the creator the meaning changes sometimes. I agree with your last sentence. Very profound. I looked up Ciardi and the “How Does a Poem Mean?” I wish I had learned this in college English class.


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