A Few Good Words to Tide Us Over

I have four  special poems tonight. It could be a dozen but I am restraining myself. A torrent of poems have recently come my way and poetry needs to be shared. Furthurmore, it is even better when spoken aloud. You may decide to do so in the quiet of your own room or  read one or two to a friend.  These are all self explanatory (my kind of poem) and need nothing more from me. Enjoy and take them to heart.

I Worried by Mary Oliver, Swan: Poems and Prose Poems

I worried a lot. Will the garden grow, will the rivers

flow in the right direction, will the earth turn

as it was taught, and if not how shall

I correct it?

 

Was I right, was I wrong, will I be forgiven,

can I do better?

 

Will I ever be able to sing, even the sparrows

can do it and I am, well,

hopeless.

 

Is my eyesight fading or am I just imagining it,

am I going to get rheumatism,

lockjaw, dementia?

 

Finally, I saw that worrying had come to nothing.

And gave it up. And took my old body

and went out into the morning,

and sang.

 

AS IF TO DEMONSTRATE AN ECLIPSE by Billy Collins from Nine Horses

I pick an orange from a wicker basket

and place it on the table

to represent the sun.

Then down at the other end

a blue and white marble

becomes the earth

and nearby I lay the little moon of an aspirin.

 

I get a glass from a cabinet,

open a bottle of wine,

then I sit in a ladder-back chair,

a benevolent god presiding

over a miniature creation myth,

 

and I begin to sing

a homemade canticle of thanks

for this perfect little arrangement,

for not making the earth too hot or cold

not making it spin too fast or slow

 

so that the grove of orange trees

and the owl become possible,

not to mention the rolling wave,

the play of clouds, geese in flight,

and the Z of lightning on a dark lake.

 

Then I fill my glass again

and give thanks for the trout,

the oak, and the yellow feather,

 

singing the room full of shadows,

as sun and earth and moon

circle one another in their impeccable orbits

and I get more and more cockeyed with gratitude.

 

Winter; Tonight; Sunset by David Budbill from WHILE WE’VE STILL GOT FEET.

Tonight at sunset walking on the snowy road,
My shoes crunching on the frozen gravel, first

Through the woods, then out into the open fields
Past a couple of trailers and some pick up trucks, I stop

and look at the sky. Suddenly: Orange, red, pink, blue,
Green, purple, yellow, gray, all at once and everywhere.

I pause in this moment at the beginning of my old age
And I say a prayer of gratitude for getting to this evening.

A prayer for being here, today, now, alive
In this life, in this evening, under this sky.

NOTES

Note 1:) Have I told you before how poetry can heal, provoke, sooth, calm and help us to bear the unbearable? It can also make us laugh and lighten the load and inspire us to keep putting one foot in front of the other. Look at this tiny Haiku from Issa that encourages us to make our way slowly, imperfectly, one step at a time.

CLASSIC HAIKU edited by Tom Lowenstein- I just pre-ordered this new book.

Little snail,
slowly, slowly,
climbs Mount Fuji.  by Issa

Note 2:) I read that sales of Christmas trees have tripled and quadrupled this year with people decorating a tree for the first time. It makes sense to me that we all need extra light and warmth and comfort. I love walking in my neighbourhood with the glow from the lights and the brilliant moon.

Note 3:) I received a gift from my daughter yesterday. An advent village with my favourite Purdy’s chocolates. It is a fun and warmhearted gift and I was the lucky one, along with the grandchildren.

Note4:) I hope you find time for playfulness this month. It may not be your traditional holiday but with imagination and a little effort you may surprise yourself with something brand new, or something old that you dust off. Thank you for graciously reading my blog. I deeply appreciate you. Warmly, Trudy

6 replies
  1. gottfried
    gottfried says:

    It’s almost bedtime where I live, and for the first time this day, a free smile escapes from my worried face as I read your post just now.
    Deep thanks to you Trudy, again, at the right, exact time, like a Swiss train, arriving.
    g

    Reply
  2. janice
    janice says:

    Lovely collection of poems to warm our hearts Trudy (the Budbill new to me). And haiku fit into the smallest space 🙂 Enjoy your Purdy’s – I always associate them with you. much love, Jan

    Reply
  3. Margaret
    Margaret says:

    Thanks so much, Trudy. I love these poems! Hadn’t heard of David Budhill…the last two stanzas send a lovely shiver down my spine – perfect.

    Reply
  4. Carol Ingells
    Carol Ingells says:

    Trudy, thank you once again for your thoughtful and beautiful sharing! I especially love Mary Oliver’s “Worried”. As Robert & I prepare to move in early January, it is important to remember that we don’t need to worry. One step at a time, right?

    Reply

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