Poet Rick Barot reads his poem "After Darwish." 
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Poet Rick Barot reads his poem "After Darwish."
Credit: Courtesy of Mara Barot

Local Poet On Trying To Hold On To Love's Beginning

Washington state poet laureate Elizabeth Austen presents a "darkly beautiful love poem" from Tacoma-based poet Rick Barot.

In his poem "After Darwish," he gives voice to the perennial human longing for a love without conflict, without loss. His poem borrows a line from Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish's "I Want From Love Only the Beginning."

"I want from love only the beginning.Not this hillside above the twilight-awakeningcity, where you are more absentfor being so present in my mind."

Barot's poem is part of his new collection, "Chord." His previous collections are "The Darker Fall" and "Want."

Barot teaches at Pacific Lutheran University and directs the Rainier Writing Workshop, PLU's MFA program in creative writing. He is the poetry editor for New England Review.