KWH Pick of the Week: “Unconditional Love Song” by C.D. Wright, Chosen by Adam Clay

Posted on April 9, 2012


Knox Writers’ House Contributor’s Pick of the Week 4/9/2012

Unconditional Love Song by C.D. Wright in Providence, RI

Chosen by Adam Clay in Kalamazoo, MI who says:

I’ve been sitting in the backyard listening to poem after poem from
this amazing archive and considering the way in which hearing a poem
without the print alongside of it is such an amazing experience. It’s
like being at a baseball park without replay on the big screen—you
have to pay attention if you want to know what happens.

The poem that struck me the most today is C.D. Wright’s “Unconditional
Love Song,” a poem I’ve always loved, but it’s a totally different
experience when I hear Wright read it. The poem engages with memory,
removal, and renewal: “even though the sound of the river was not
there / the memory of the sound was” and even though the husband is
absent, “the day ahead was there”. I love its twists and turns and the
way “the storm blew everything out / before the coffee finished its

I knew Wright’s work for a long time before I had the chance to hear
her read it; now, I can’t imagine reading her poems without hearing
her voice in my mind.

Let us know what you think….post a comment or email us at