Study Guide

Mind

by Jorie Graham

Mind eText - eText

Text of the Poem

The slow overture of rain,
each drop breaking
without breaking into
the next, describes
the unrelenting, syncopated             5
mind. Not unlike
the hummingbirds
imagining their wings
to be their heart, and swallows
believing the horizon                      10
to be a line they lift
and drop. What is it
they cast for? The poplars,
advancing or retreating,
lose their stature                           15
equally, and yet stand firm,
making arrangements
in order to become
imaginary. The city
draws the mind in streets,              20
and streets compel it
from their intersections
where a little
belongs to no one. It is
what is driven through                   25
all stationary portions
of the world, gravity’s
stake in things. The leaves,
pressed against the dank
window of November                     30
soil, remain unwelcome
till transformed, parts
of a puzzle unsolvable
till the edges give a bit
and soften. See how                      35
then the picture becomes clear,
the mind entering the ground
more easily in pieces,
and all the richer for it.