by Kate L., May 25, 2005 12:38 PM
I think of William Stafford as part grandfather/part favorite college professor. Although he was neither to me, his poems have a quiet truth that I both admire and adore. I wish I could have heard him teach at Lewis and Clark College or read as Oregon's Poet Laureate, but I am left with poems on paper. And, so, I memorize them and recite them aloud on friends' answering machines, or carry one folded in my back pocket. The poems he wrote in the days leading up to his death in 1993 have an amazing awareness of human life that I try to carry with me every day. Despite violent times, William Stafford lived his life with great peace as a conscientious objector and as a poet. At this giant bookstore where I discover new books every day, I consider William Stafford my best find.