Richard Wilbur…What Love Is

We note with sadness the passing of Charlotte Wilbur, wife of Cummington poet Richard Wilbur. Today’s Gazette writes,

Married for 64 years, Charlotte and her husband shared an enduring love.

Richard Wilbur, 86, who called his wife “my best reader,” said he viewed her life as poetry in motion and that she was often his poetic inspiration.

“One poem of mine, entitled ‘Catch,’ was prompted by her,” Wilbur said. “I saw her trying on a new dress in front of the mirror, and I took notice of all the things she was doing in front of that mirror. She was charming, very literate without being grim, and was just a beautiful woman.”

Richard Wilbur is a former US poet laureate. “The Catch” is published at eMule. Here is a part:

…The dress, now that she’s in it,

Has changed appreciably, and gains
By lacy shoes, a light perfume
Whose subtle field electrifies the room,
And two slim golden chains…

…There is no question—it

Is wholly charming, it is she,
As I belatedly remark
And may be hung now in the fragrant dark
Of her soft armory.

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