December 7th, 2007


Poetry Friday -- Rita Dove

Lately all the news is about the upcoming primaries.
And the most recent bombings in Iraq.
Sometimes it is all I can do to say to myself, "These are not dark days, these are not dark days, these are not dark days."

But today, on this drizzly, gray morning my children will be gifted with a concert in their cafeteria called The Circle of Light. More than a dozen luminous musicians will bring the traditions of Christmas and Hannukah and Kwanzaa and Ramadan and La Posada and Divali alive, through music, for our kids. Each year, it brings me to my knees. It is better than my humming mantra -- "These are not dark days" -- because it feels absolutely entirely true. And possible. And beautiful. And even, if you can believe it, easy. Easy to connect and comfort the whole world. Through words, music and school children. I mean, why not? 

So I was reminded of this piece Rita Dove wrote for the dedication of the Clinton library a few years ago. It's better than my humming mantra, too. Give it a read:

This Life

My grandmother told me there'd be good days
to counter the dark ones, with blue skies in the heart
as far as the soul could see. She said
you could measure a life in as many ways
as there were to bake a pound cake,
but you still need real butter and eggs 
for a good one -- pound cake, that is, 
but I knew what she meant.

(Read the rest here...)