David Koehn over at The Great American Pinup made an interesting post a few days ago (followed by a follow-up post) about coming up with a mini-anthology of ten poems that somehow (and here I'm putting my own spin on it, I'm sure) represents you, and the sort of poetry you want to write, and your own aesthetics. Not necessarily your all-time favorite poems, or the ones you think are the all-time greatest poems, but just ten poems for who and where you are right now.
I thought it would be hard to do, but once I started thinking about it, my list of ten came fairly easily, and it's kind of interesting to step back and look at what I selected. Here they are, in no particular order:
Sylvia Plath, "Ariel"
Gerard Manley Hopkins, "God's Grandeur"
Adrienne Rich, "Twenty-One Love Poems" (which is probably cheating, but)
Adrienne Rich, "Dreamwood"
Mary Oliver, "Wild Geese"
Ellen Bass, "3 A.M. Feeding"
Joy Harjo, "Eagle Poem"
Li-Young Lee, "From Blossoms"
Mark Doty, "Lost in the Stars"
Olga Broumas, "Artemis"
Stanley Kunitz's "The Layers" was on the list until I recounted and realized it was eleven, even with cheating and counting Rich's "Twenty-One" as one. And if I don't hurry up and post this entry immediately, I'm going to start thinking of others and then I shall have to gnash my teeth and moan and wail.
What would your list of ten poems look like?