Friday Poems: The Fall

I picked up a collection of poetry at the library this week, Word of Mouth, which is an anthology of work featured on NPR's All Things Considered

Today I'm sharing something short (and I think sweet) by Russell Edson. Catherine Bowman, the editor of the book, tells us that Edson "thinks of poems as waking dreams, in that each poem is a moment of being fully conscious while tapping into the dream mind" and he believes "the shorter the work the more it can depend on symbol, metaphor and gesture. There is an exacting precision and logic in these waking dreams."

I learned that Edson's poems are almost always short and he writes exclusively in the prose poem form. Best of all for a girl like me? Edson says, "The world is a strange place and it helps to see yourself as a secret agent." I love it! Just ask my husband, "Who is the real secret agent in the house?" 

The Fall
Russell Edson

  There was a man who found two leaves and came indoors holding them out saying to his parents that he was a tree.

  To which they said then go into the yard and do not grow in the living-room as your roots may ruin the carpet.

  He said I was fooling I am not a tree and he dropped his leaves.

  But his parents said look it is fall.

Do you see this poem as sweet? ironic? biting? something else? I love work such as this because I see many layers stacked into one brief moment. (Note: I have a B.A. in English, so this is a fun activity for me.)