O is for Order.

| April 3, 2014

O is for Order by Randall Mann.  Order is one of my favorite poems of all time.  When I first came across it in the April 2013 issue of Poetry Magazine, I didn’t realize it was written according to a very exact form.  Upon rereading it multiple times and showing it to my Poetic Forms professor, I realized that there was definitely a form—I just couldn’t figure out exactly what that form was.  Finally, I realized that the poem was perfectly mirrored: the last line repeated at the middle of the poem.  The repetition of the first half of the poem continued until the end of the poem, which concluded with the first line.  To me, this repetition was representative of the circular, and in many ways orderly nature of life.  Especially considering the reminiscent and nostalgic tone of the poem, I was reminded of the way that thoughts and memories seem to continually surface in the mind in a mirror-like fashion.  Additionally, the poem feels as though it is in constant movement—both within the actual poem as well as between past and present.

Read the entire poem here: