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Edward Hirsch

Edward Hirsch's first collection of poems, "For the Sleepwalkers," was published in 1981 and went on to receive the Lavan Younger Poets Award from the Academy of American Poets and the[…]

Edward Hirsch shares an original poem.

Question: Special Orders

Edward Hirsch:  This is the title poem of my book Special Orders: 
 

Give me back my father walking the halls

   of Wertheimer Box and Paper Company         

       with sawdust clinging to his shoes.

 

Give me back his tape measure and his keys,    

   his drafting pencil and his order forms;         

       give me his daydreams on lined paper. 

 

I don’t understand this uncontainable grief.    

    Whatever you had that never fit,         

       whatever else you needed, believe me, 

 

my father, who wanted your business,    

    would squat down at your side         

        and sketch you a container for it. 

 

Recorded on February 4, 2010