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Jane Hirshfield

Jane Hirshfield

Jane Hirshfield's sixth, most recent book of poetry, After (HarperCollins, 2006) was named a "best book of 2006" by The Washington Post, The San Francisco Chronicle, and England's Financial Times. She is also the author of a book of essays, Nine Gates: Entering the Mind of Poetry (HarperCollins, 1997) and editor/translator of three now-classic collections of poetry by women from earlier times. Her poems appear in The New Yorker, The Atlantic Monthly, Poetry, The American Poetry Review, Orion, The Times Literary Supplement, and elsewhere. A new collection of poems, Come, Thief, will appear from Knopf in August 2011.

Fourth World

A friend dies.
A horse dies.
A woman dies over and over again on the news.

Without them,
the fourth world continues.
Waking fox-red on the flanks of the mountain.

Absence, anger, grief,
cruelty, failure—
The fox walks through them.

It wants, as she had, to live.

All day it is cool in the shadows, hot in the sun.

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