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This poem reminds me of the stranger poems by Walt Whitman.  The poet does not want to talk to a lot of people at the same time.  She just wants to establish an intimate relationship with one.  This is the dream of an artist. To establish a connection with the one who gets the art.  Even if there is only one.  And the one who is reading knows, that there are at least 2 entities with that relationship — the poet and the reader. 


Ideal Audience

by Kay Ryan


Not scattered legions,
not a dozen from
a single region 
for whom accent
matters, not a seven-
member coven,
not five shirttail
cousins; just
one free citizen–
maybe not alive
now even–who
will know with
exquisite gloom 
that only we two
ever found this room.

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