I dont think this next poem
needs any introduction
its best to let the work speak for itself.
Maybe I should just mention
that whenever I use the word five,
Im referring to that group of Russian composers
who came to be known as The Five,
Balakirev, Moussorgsky, Borodinthat crowd.
Ohand Hypsicles was a Greek astronomer.
He did something with the circle.
Thats about it, but for the record,
Grimké is Angelina Emily Grimké, the abolitionist.
Imroz is that little island near the Dardanelles.
Monadwell, you all know what a monad is.
There could be a little problem
with mastaba, which is one of those Egyptian
above-ground sepulchers, sort of brick and limestone.
And youre all familiar with helminthology?
Its the science of worms.
Oh, and you will recall that Phoebe Mozee
is the real name of Annie Oakley
Other than that. everything should be obvious.
Wagga Wagga is New South Wales.
Rhyolite is thatt soft volcanic rock.
Yes, meranti is a type of timber, in tropical Asia I think,
and Rahway is just Rahway, New Jersey.
The rest of the poem should be clear.
Ill just read it and let it speak for itself.
Its about the time I went picking wild strawberries.
Its called Picking Wild Strawberries.
– Billy Collins, en The trouble with poetry and other poems.