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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Gregory Orr
Gregory Orr
The author of numerous collections of poetry, Gregory Orr is considered by many to be a master of short, lyric free verse...
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FURTHER READING
Poems About Funerals
In Memoriam, [To Sleep I give my powers away]
by Lord Alfred Tennyson
A Refusal to Mourn the Death, by Fire, of a Child in London
by Dylan Thomas
Age and Death
by Emma Lazarus
Because I could not stop for Death (712)
by Emily Dickinson
Bomb Crater Sky
by Lam Thi My Da
By ways remote and distant waters sped (101)
by Gaius Valerius Catullus
Driven across many nations (101)
by Gaius Valerius Catullus
For the Union Dead
by Robert Lowell
Fugue of Death
by Paul Celan
In Flanders Fields
by John McCrae
Night Funeral in Harlem
by Langston Hughes
O Captain! My Captain!
by Walt Whitman
Question
by May Swenson
Song ["When I am dead, my dearest"]
by Christina Rossetti
Suddenly
by Sharon Olds
The Earth Opens and Welcomes You
by Abdellatif Laâbi
The World as Seen Through a Glass of Ice Water
by Dobby Gibson
What Came to Me
by Jane Kenyon
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Untitled [This is what was bequeathed us]

 
by Gregory Orr

This is what was bequeathed us:
This earth the beloved left
And, leaving,
Left to us.

No other world
But this one:
Willows and the river
And the factory
With its black smokestacks.

No other shore, only this bank
On which the living gather.

No meaning but what we find here.
No purpose but what we make.

That, and the belovedís clear instructions:
Turn me into song; sing me awake.






From How Beautiful the Beloved by Gregory Orr. Copyright © 2009 by Gregory Orr. Used by permission of Copper Canyon Press. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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