Proem Press

The Poem Has Reasons - View (PDF File Is Large)

By Sarah White


Why do we write poetry? Many poets come to the podium accompanied by  raisons d’être for particular poems. Can we believe what they say, or  do they simply seek to enhance the poem by preceding it with a piquant explanation? 


In medieval troubadour literature such explanations, or “reasons,” often claimed that certain kinds of poems could be explained by certain kinds of love—especially a difficult “far love,” amor de lonh. Musing on her reasons for writing, White elaborates the impact of far love on her own vocation, life, and poetry.

William Rector, Advisory Editor


Sarah White's poems are collected in Cleopatra Haunts the Hudson

(Spuyten Duyvil, 2007) and Mrs. Bliss and the Paper Spouses (Pudding House, 2007).  She collaborated on an edition/translation, Songs of the Women Troubadours (Garland, 2000).  She lives in Manhattan.

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