Poetry is all about revolution, rock and roll, and breaking rules! The past is always present in the poem, but it's challenged—or at least remembered—with a twist in "Proem." And we're not talking about a few days ago or last month; this is the ancient past, which gives the poem some weight and a place in the very tradition it is both praising—and challenging.
Time to hop in the way-back machine. "Proem" attempts to dig into a collective, cultural past to explain poetry's source.
Poet Ezra Pound famously said "Make it new." When Pound speaks, Paz listens. "Proem" is all about breaking with the past and starting something entirely new.