Expect Nothing by Alice Walker
Expect nothing. Live frugally On surprise. become a stranger To need of pity Or, if compassion be freely Given out Take only enough Stop short of urge to plead Then purge away the need. Wish for nothing larger Than your own small heart Or greater than a star; Tame wild disappointment With caress unmoved and cold Make of it a parka For your soul. Discover the reason why So tiny human midget Exists at all So scared unwise But expect nothing. Live frugally On surprise.
Art by Charlotte Ager
Other poems I read this week: (read the full poem in the links)
"Be ahead of all parting, as if it had already happened,
like winter, which even now is passing. For beneath the winter is a winter so endless that to survive it at all is a triumph of the heart."
-Sonnets XIII, Part II Sonnets to Orpheus Rainer Maria Rilke "My grandmothers are full of memories Smelling of soap and onions and wet clay With veins rolling roughly over quick hands They have many clean words to say. My grandmothers were strong. Why am I not as they?" -Lineage by Margaret Walker "There will be other days, there will be other voices. You will smile alone. The cats will know. You will hear words old and spent and useless like costumes left over from yesterday’s parties." -The Cats Will Know by Cesare Pavese, translated by Geoffrey Brock "At night I dream that you and I are two plants that grew together, roots entwined, and that you know the earth and the rain like my mouth, since we are made of earth and rain. Sometimes I think that with death we will seep below, in the depths at the feet of he effigy, looking over the ocean which brought us here to build and make love." -Rain (Rapa Nui) by Pablo Neruda "Ginsberg came to my house one afternoon and said he was giving up poetry because it told lies, that language distorts. I agreed, but asked what we have that gets it right even that much. We look up at the stars and they are not there. We see the memory of when they were, once upon a time. And that too is more than enough."
Links of the Week: 349 (a celebration of dance and the human connection) Teatime in Darjeeling Kat's Kable Now More Than Ever - Zadie Smith The Controversial Life and Art of Post-Impressionist Painter Paul Gauguin