How do you know when a poem is finished?
This is tricky! So often I think a poem is finished, or I’m finished with it, when really it’s just beginning. It’s very easy to know when a poem isn’t finished: reading it makes me itchy. Or maybe that’s when it is finished? One thing for sure, I know when a thing I hope might become a poem is spent, when it just fizzles out to nothing, like realizing suddenly I’m not obsessed anymore by some ordinary thing I’d been obsessing about, because it just doesn’t matter. But for a poem, knowing when it’s finished is almost as hard as knowing when it’s a poem.