Department of English

Tom Whitbread Publishes New Book of Poems

Fri, April 13, 2007
Professor Whitbread has had a long and distinguished career as a poet. His work has been published in the New Yorker, Harper's, and the Texas Observer. He has also been a recipient of the O.Henry and Aga Khan awards. Included below is a sample selected by Dr. Whitbread.

''The Stupidity of Man''
-William Carlos Williams, ''These''

Rare is the air that countermands despair.
Pikas inhabit it, and Rocky Mountains.
Down on the plains are hurry, smog, and care.
In the high country, pure spring water fountains.

But even on the plains and seacoasts, in
The towns and cities, harried people lead
Good lives, with primrosed lawns, kids, not much sin,
Jonquils by doorsteps, plenty of healthy seed.

This was before man's fluorocarbons rose,
Invisibly mighty, into the azure sky,
And ate the ozone that lets all that grows
Flower and breed beneath the sun. We die.
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