KWH Pick of the Week: “The Temple of Dendur” by William Reichard, Chosen by Joyce Sutphen

Posted on June 4, 2012


Knox Writers’ House Contributor’s Pick of the Week 6/4/2012

 The Temple of Dendur by William Reichard in Twin Cities, MN

Chosen by Joyce Sutphen in Twin Cities, MN who says:

It was hard to settle on just one poem as the “Pick of the Week.”  I spent a long time listening to poems by poets in various geographical locations and different parts of the alphabet, and as a result I felt as if I had been to a poetry Woodstock.  (Great job Writer’s House!)  In the end, I did what I often do when I’m choosing something:  I came back to my first impulse, “The Temple of Dendur,” by William Reichard.  Because I kept listening to it every time I came back, I realized how well constructed the poem is; the narrative is spare, but it manages to summon up New York City and the Midwest, Winter and Spring, and “everything and nothing,” simultaneously.  I love the description of the Metropolitan’s big windows and how they bring in the light of Central Park and the imagined desert—and I adore the ending.  No matter how many times I hear it, I’m always a little sad and surprised.  Take a listen!

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