“The Sun”

Wilda Morris created “The Sun” from Moby-Dick by Herman Melville (1851). Please click here to read.

About the poem and the process of composing it, Wilda Morris writes:

I selected Moby-Dick as my text because I am fascinated by Melville’s novel. I have written a whole book of poems responding to it. I narrowed my source down to Chapter 87, “The Grand Armada,” because that was the chapter I was assigned for a Moby-Dick marathon honoring Melville’s 200th birthday. I read through the chapter, marking words and phrases that interested me. When I came to the phrase “the circus-running sun,” I felt intuitively that I had found my focus. All the words in this poem occur in the order they appear in my source text. After I settled on the sun as theme, I reread the words and phrases I had marked before getting to that part of the chapter, and came up with the first two lines. Then I read what followed “the circus-running sun” to find the rest of the poem.