Grilled cheese sandwich    Slice of pickle
Bread pudding and coffee

            At the hospital with a Poor Clare teaching poet nun
            from the psychiatric ward

Spoke of saints and other poets
How they lived and why
And how compelling their intensity

            Noted that each was like a poem
            (and a complicated poem, I interjected)
            She turned her head and gazed at me

But why should they be complicated poems?

Because      no poem      or person
can be a simple thing for very long (I answered)

And she said
You are wrong     About poems         And people

            (she had forgotten I was a psychiatrist)

Perhaps you may some day become intense
Remain that way for longer than it takes
to sketch a lyric poem

Remain       Remain      intense without relief

What a poet you might then become
And they would put you in a room with padded walls

Right next to mine

—Jerry Hauser