Poem of the Week, “Hedgehog”

by Paul Muldoon

The snail moves like a
Hovercraft, held up by a
Rubber cushion of itself,
Sharing its secret

With the hedgehog. The hedgehog
Shares its secret with no one.
We say, Hedgehog, come out
Of yourself and we will love you.

We mean no harm. We want
Only to listen to what
You have to say. We want
Your answers to our questions.

The hedgehog gives nothing
Away, keeping itself to itself.
We wonder what a hedgehog
Has to hide, why it so distrusts.

We forget the god
under this crown of thorns.
We forget that never again
will a god trust in the world.


In honor of St. Patrick’s Day, I thought I’d choose an Irish poet for this week. Paul Muldoon has been one of my favorite poets since I read this poem a few years ago. If you’re not familiar with him, Muldoon is an Irish poet currently living in the United States teaching at Princeton and working as the poetry editor for The New Yorker. He is  generally a badass.

If you want to be amazed, you should probably watch the video attached below and listen to him read his own poem:


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