Derek Walcott on the necessity of ritual
"Any serious attempt to try to do something worthwhile is ritualistic."
Welcome to the seventh issue of Subtle Maneuvers. In honor of National Poetry Month, I’ll be looking at the routines and rituals of poets for the next few weeks. First up, the Nobel Prize–winning poet and playwright Derek Walcott.
Derek Walcott (1930–2017)
In 1985, the American poet Edward Hirsch went to St. Lucia to visit Walcott, who was born on the island and lived there for much of his adult life. “To live next door to Walcott, even for a week,” Hirsch wrote, “is to understand how he has managed to be so productive over the years. A prodigious worker, he often starts at about 4:30 in the morning and continues until he has done a four- or five-hour stint—by the time most people are getting up for the day.”