Viral 5.5

by Scott Metz on February 4, 2010

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Virals is a section in which one person choses a haiku by another person and comments on that haiku. Then the author of that haiku is invited to select a haiku by someone else and comment on that poem, and so on. For an introduction to this section, see Virals.








Viral 5.5


The Light in the Darkness

by Ruth Yarrow




                                             toll booth lit for Christmas—
                                             from my hand to hers
                                             warm change


                                                                               — Michael Dylan Welch


I find this poem full of contrasts and of hope.  The contrasts include the lighted booth in the early dark of a December evening, the coins warmed by his hand reaching out into cold Christmas weather, and the warmth of the connection in what is a very impersonal fleeting monetary exchange.  The hope I feel in this poem comes from the light in the darkness, the hope of the season, the reach across what may be class and race as well as gender lines, including the smile and thanks I assume are there.  And that last line has so many reverberations. We are all humans, giving us the potential to connect with warmth.  We have the potential to change the global messes we are in if we make those connections.  I admit this is laying a lot on a short poem—maybe far too much.  But the feelings of connection, warmth and hope are all in that moment, and after all, emotions are what makes any poem poetry. Thanks, Michael.


“toll booth” was first published in Frogpond XVIII: 4

As featured poet, Michael Dylan Welch will select a poem
and provide commentary on it for Viral 5.6.

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 
Viral 5.1 (Metz ➾ Lyles)
Viral 5.2 (Lyles ➾ Chang)
Viral 5.3 (Chang ➾ Stevenson)
Viral 5.4 (Stevenson ➾ Yarrow)




{ 41 comments }

Merrill Ann Gonzales February 18, 2010 at 9:46 pm

I agree with Michael…Men may die for lack of what is written there…but to turn poetry into the servant of any agenda to me speaks of the enslavement of the mind and heart of the human being. It wouldn’t take long before men would die from what is written there…

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