Stephen King

Author Stephen King is well known for his horror, suspense, and fantasy novels, and the movies adapted from many of them. His books have sold well over 300 million copies. Though probably not generally thought of as a poet, he did write this touching little gem of a poem for the 2016 television adaptation of his book 11/22/63, about a time-traveler that goes back in time to prevent the President Kennedy assassination on November 22, 1963. The poem did not appear in the book, but in the 8-part mini-series it is recited in a scene at the very end of the last episode, thus it generated some online discussion and comment at various websites, along with questions about who actually wrote it. On the message boards at, one poster stated that they had tweeted Bridget Carpenter, writer and one of the producers of the TV series, and she stated that Stephen King, not her, had in fact actually written the poem for the screenplay. That definitively settles it for me. (You can watch this final scene and the recitation of the poem on YouTube.) Since it doesn’t appear in print in any book I know of, I have given it a title and line breaks that seem appropriate to me for poetry, and I hope Stephen King would approve.

We Did Not Ask For This Room

We did not ask for this room,
       or this music;
       we were invited in.
because the dark surrounds us,
       let us turn our faces toward the light.
Let us endure hardship
       to be grateful for plenty.
We have been given pain
       to be astounded by joy.
We have been given life
       to deny death.
We did not ask for this room,
       or this music.
But because we are here,
       let us dance.