96: So Early in the Morning by Charles Simic


It pains me to see an old woman fret over
A few small coins outside a grocery store –
How swiftly I forget her as my own grief
Finds me again – a friend at death’s door
And the memory of the night we spent together.

I had so much love in my heart afterward,
I could have run into the street naked
Confident anyone I met would understand
My madness and my need to tell them
About life being both cruel and beautiful,

But I did not – despite the overwhelming evidence:
A crow bent over a dead squirrel in the road,
The lilac bushes flowering in some yard,
And the sight of a dog free from his chain
Searching through a neighbor’s trash can.

 

 

The author’s work can be found in the volume, New and Selected Poems: 1962-2012.

Think about how the poem made you feel. Today, do you find the world to be more cruel or beautiful? Do you ever feel so overwhelmed by the world’s grief that you retreat to your own?

May you live out another beautiful poem in the collection of your life today, and we’ll see you again tomorrow.

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