It is enough for me as a reader that a poem take from life a single moment and hold it up for me to look at. There need not be anything sensational or unusual or peculiar about that moment, but somehow, by directing my attention to it, our attention to it, the poet bathes it in the light of the remarkable. Here is a poem like this by Carolyn Miller, who lives in San Francisco.
The World as It is
No ladders, no descending angels, no voice out of the whirlwind, no rending of the veil, or chariot in the sky – only water rising and falling in breathing springs and seeping up through limestone, aquifers filling and flowing over, russet stands of prairie grass and dark pupils of black-eyed Susans. Only the fixed and wandering stars: Orion rising sideways, Jupiter traversing the southwest like a great firefly, Venus trembling and faceted in the west – and the moon, appearing suddenly over your shoulder, brimming and ovoid, ripe with light, lifting slowly, deliberately, wobbling slightly, while far below, the faithful sea rises up and follows.