Charles Wright reads ‘When the Horses Gallop Away from Us, It’s a Good Thing’

BY artsdesk  March 1, 2011 at 1:42 PM EST

Charles Wright reads “When the Horses Gallop Away from Us, It’s a Good Thing.”

When the Horses Gallop Away from Us, It’s a Good Thing
I always find it strange—though I shouldn’t—how creatures don’t
care for us the way we care for them.
Horses, for instance, and chipmunks, and any bird you’d name.
Empathy’s only a one-way street.

And that’s all right, I’ve come to believe.
It sets us up for ultimate things,
and penultimate ones as well.
It’s a good lesson to have in your pocket when the Call comes to
call.

Charles Wright has written more than 20 books of poetry and his work has won nearly every major award, including the Pulitzer Prize, National Book Award and National Book Critics Circle Award.

The NewsHour traveled to Wright’s home in Charlottesville, Va., where he has lived for more than 27 years. For Wright, poetry is his “reason for living” and his work serves as a sort of autobiography, exploring his relationship with language, landscape and the idea of god. Now in his 70′s, Wright’s later poems are concise, often just six lines.

He told the NewsHour, “It’s hard to get more into less, but it can be done.” Read the transcript from our conversation with Charles Wright.