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A Poem for a Thursday #33

Photo by bady qb on Unsplash


Maggie Smith is an American poet, writer, and editor. Her poem "Good Bones" was widely circulated on social media and became the 'unofficial poem of 2016." I like this poem about a mother with her newborn child.

I'm your guide here. In the evening-dark
morning streets, I point and name.
Look, the sycamores, their mottled,
paint-by-number bark. Look, the leaves
rusting and crisping at the edges.
I walk through Schiller Park with you
on my chest. Stars smolder well
into daylight. Look, the pond, the ducks,
the dogs paddling after their prized sticks.
Fall is when the only things you know
because I've named them
begin to end. Soon I'll have another 
season to offer you:  frost soft
on the window and a porthole
sighed there, ice sleeving the bare
gray branches. The first time you see
something die, you won't know it might
come back. I'm desperate for you
to love the world because I brought you here. 

First Fall
Maggie Smith

Brona at Brona's Books has also shared a poem.

Golden Moments #11


We went for a walk in a state park near our house. It was warm and sunny but not hot. The trail wasn't crowded and we all were cheerful. If that isn't a golden moment then I don't know what is.

I took my daughter shopping for new clothes. She needed them desperately but it is always a fraught experience. She is 13 with all the insecurities that go along with the age and we usually end the day of shopping grumpy and miserable. This time she liked everything she tried on and found a few things she loves. She was so happy she was dancing in the dressing room. I convinced her of the wonders of thrift shopping. Buying clothes isn't nearly so horrible when you can pick and choose your own style instead of trying to fit into the style the store insists you should have.

I bought myself two jean jackets when I was shopping with my daughter. I couldn't decide between the two and, since it was a thrift store and they were cheap, I bought both. I have a mental image of me in cute summer dresses, strappy sandals, and a jean jacket. We will ignore the fact that I am always so hot that a jean jacket in the summer is totally impractical. I am sure I will get a lot of use out of them in the two weeks of spring and two weeks of autumn we usually enjoy. I hope you read that last sentence with an appropriately sarcastic tone.

I bought an obscene number of books in the last few weeks but I did not spend an obscene amount of money on them. I am currently deep in a romantic suspense binge and I couldn't be happier.

My husband has a doctor's appointment today to check on his concussion recovery and we are going out to lunch afterward. That is a future golden moment but I am counting it. He said something about stopping at a bookstore as well. That man knows me so well. Please don't refer to the point above about an obscene number of books. When you are offered a trip to a bookstore you always accept.

This moment right now. The sun is shining, the house is quiet, I made a pot of tea, and I have 45 minutes until I have to start getting ready to leave. All days should start this way.






A Poem for a Thursday #32

Photo by Leone Venter on Unsplash


Robert Graves was a British poet, classicist, novelist, and critic. Graves was one of the most well-known WWI poets along with Siegfreid Sassoon and Wilfred Owen. He was one of the first to write poets about what it was really like to be in the front lines.  Graves is also known for his autobiography Good-bye To All That. I found today's poem in a Norton Anthology of Poetry I bought recently. I am not totally sure what he is trying to say but I like the way the words sound and, to be honest, that is mostly how I pick poems.

Children, if you dare to think
Of the greatness, rareness, muchness,
Fewness of this precious only
Endless world in which you say
You live, you think of things like this:
Blocks of slate enclosing dappled
Red and green, enclosing tawny
Yellow nets, enclosing white
And black acres of dominoes,
Where a neat brown paper parcel
Tempts you to untie the string.
In the parcel a small island,
On the island a large tree, 
On the tree a husky fruit.
Strip the husk and pare the rind off: 
In the kernel you will see
Blocks of slate enclosed by dappled 
Red and green, enclosed by tawny 
Yellow nets, enclosed by white
And black acres of dominoes,
Where the same brown paper parcel--
Children, leave the string alone!
For who dares undo the parcel
Finds himself at once inside it,
On the island, in the fruit,
Blocks of slate about his head
Finds himself enclosed by dappled 
Green and red, enclosed by yellow
Tawny nets, enclosed by black
And white acres of dominoes,
With the same brown paper parcel
Still unopened on his knee
And, if he then should dare to think
Of the fewness, muchness, rareness,
Greatness of this endless only
Precious world in which he says
He lives--he then unties the string.

Warning to Children
Robert Graves

Reese at Typings has a poem by Tom Disch this week.