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Reading “Diving into the Wreck” by Adrienne Rich



Poetry Lunch S2E8

Reading “Diving into the Wreck” by Adrienne Rich, in Staying Alive: Real Poems for Unreal Times, edited by Neil Astley and published by Bloodaxe Books.


Well so. I meant not to ramble and did anyway, what more do I have to add about the wreck? There are so many lines in this poem I love and also, I love how it takes it’s time. More and more I feel that’s the thing, the way toward healing, is time. In the moment and over years.

Also I love “worn by salt and sway” and the fact that the haunters are tentative. That the wreck is terrible yes and hard to see, takes time to get to, but once you’re there it’s quiet and oh so beautiful and you get to be your many selves without any which one competing. Everyone’s allowed.

Wishing you quiet moments of curiosity with the wrecks in your own life when they resurface; and the courage to visit them once in awhile of your own volition.


Clarification re: publisher— I have an early US edition of Staying Alive; the imprint listed on the book in my hand is actually Miramax Books / Hyperion. But Bloodaxe is where the book came from, along with a whole series of these anthologies… damn fine selections all through them. I very highly recommend.

Also, this poem is the title poem of the collection Diving into the Wreck by Adrienne Rich, published by W.W. Norton & Co., 2013.


Links to purchase

Get the books: Staying Alive: Real Poems for Unreal Times and Diving into the Wreck.