27 May 2007

The flock

(It has been calculated that each copy of the Gutenberg Bible required the skins of 300 sheep).

I can see them,
squeezed into the holding pen
behind the stone building,
where the printing press is housed.
All of them squirming around to find a little room,
looking so much alike,
it would be nearly impossible to count them,
and there is no telling which one will carry the news
that the lord is a shepherd,
one of the few things they already know.

--Billy Collins, from The Trouble with Poetry (Random House, 2005; my transcription, with line breaks mostly guessed, from an interview on NPR)

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