I’m having a hard time finding the words to talk about this prose poem. I guess it’s like what I was talking about with the poem “Foreign” from last week. The poem “Tent Worms” appears in AD 32/33 and was written by Kathryn Youther.
What made this prose poem strong in my eyes is the use of one moment to make another later moment stronger. I think something similar happens when we start creating an attachment to a place: we make memories with someone somewhere and that memory develops a more complex relationship with that person or place. When I think of the idea of a ‘shared experience’ I find that it makes a lot of sense in the context of Youther’s poem: the narrator’s mother is unable to understand why the narrator and her father have an image of Ruth dancing. And it hurts the mother, although it’s not because she feels left out. Instead, the mother believes the father and the narrator to be insensitive where, in actuality, the mother cannot understand the dance because she never experienced that part of Ruth’s life the same way the narrator and the father did.
Simply put: this story makes a lot of sense to me, and I think Youther expertly wove together two moments to create a compelling piece.
—autumn, Editorial Asst.—