Hope Springs Eternal

Spring appears to have finally arrived here in the Northeast. It’s a gorgeous day outside, and certain of my adolescent clients are somewhere enjoying it, having canceled or failed to show for their appointments. I do not begrudge their having done so. I merely seethe with envy and chafe at the bonds of mature adulthood. Okay, that’s perhaps a bit exaggerated, but suffice it to say that I would not mind being outdoors with my face tilted toward the sun like a buttercup and breezy fingers ruffling my hair. And, though I am fully aware that all is not even close to right with the world—what with all the war and injustice and stuff—I cannot help but feel a spark of childlike optimism at the transient pleasure and beauty of this day. In the spirit of such, rather than dwell on the many tragedies and horrors which daily fill our news reports, allow me to share with you a poem. Enjoy…


This morning
two mockingbirds
in the green field
were spinning and tossing

the white ribbons
of their songs
into the air.
I had nothing

better to do
than listen.
I mean this

In Greece,
a long time ago,
an old couple
opened their door

to two strangers
who were,
it soon appeared,
not men at all,

but gods.
It is my favorite story–
how the old couple
had almost nothing to give

but their willingness
to be attentive–
but for this alone
the gods loved them

and blessed them–
when they rose
out of their mortal bodies,
like a million particles of water

from a fountain,
the light
swept into all the corners
of the cottage,

and the old couple,
shaken with understanding,
bowed down–
but still they asked for nothing

but the difficult life
which they had already.
And the gods smiled, as they vanished,
clapping their great wings.

Wherever it was
I was supposed to be
this morning–
whatever it was I said

I would be doing–
I was standing
at the edge of the field–
I was hurrying

through my own soul,
opening its dark doors–
I was leaning out;
I was listening.

—Mary Oliver


One thought on “Hope Springs Eternal

  1. I took advantage of the beautiful weather to put up some more flyers here in the 9th Precinct. As of today, I finally have the whole precinct covered.

    I think I’ll walk one or more of my dogs, too.

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