I’m the guy who sharpens her number two pencil. Every morning, without fail Peggy Aylsworth, now in her 96th year, writes a poem in her composition notebook. And that’s not the only reason I married her.
We don’t travel anymore. Ambulation has its challenges but her spirit is undiminished. The poems are extensions of her perceptions and that vast country within called the imagination.
Her subjects range from the Eden of trees, blossomed plants and feathered things at our breakfast window to an orange cap on the head of a dog-walker to an article about tragedy in South Sudan. All of these might find their way into one poem. She doesn’t linger to milk a metaphor. She leaps, like a hummingbird, having distilled just enough from a single image to create a thread.
Peggy's poetry is an amazing web of connectivity. A collage of disparate notations. A quiet yet rhapsodic orchestration of what her senses register and her mind intuits. She is able to transform the largely un-noticed passing parade into her own language we call, Aylsworthian.
The result is much more than a montage of imagery. Through the alchemy of her poetics and a finely tuned sensibility Peggy finds veins of emotional universality in what seem unremarkable.
Wisdom is one of those words devoutly to be avoided yet the pile of decades does confer at least an amplitude of vision which she manages to bring to the page. There is a celebration of the elemental. Her poems seem to extract an affirmation even from the dread and daily defamations we have come to allow in public discourse. Peggy’s poetry suggests not only the yes from yesterday but that a substance within us shall prevail.
Her sixth book, Under the Unwed Moon, has just been published by Letters at 3 AM Press with a preface by Michael Ventura. For those in the Los Angeles area she will be reading from her work on August 27th at 5 P.M. at Beyond Baroque in Venice.