Sunday Selections


I live like I know what I’m doing.

When I hand the horses a square of hay,
when I walk the road of stones
or chew on cactus pulp,
there’s a drumming behind me,
the day opens up to let me pass through.

I know the truth,
how always I’m following each small sign that appears.

This sheep that materialized behind a clump of cenizo bushes
knows I didn’t see him till he raised his head.

Out here it’s impossible to be lonely.
The land walking beside you is your oldest friend,
pleasantly silent, like already you’ve told the best stories
and each of you knows how much the other made up.

– Naomi Shahib Nye, “At the Seven-Mile Ranch, Comstock, Texas”

3 thoughts on “Sunday Selections

    • I didn’t know that website or that poem. Thanks for both.

      I heard this poem today. Poignant and funny and true. Hope you are well. Counting the days yet? I am!!

      French Chocolates
      by Ellen Bass

      If you have your health, you have everything
      is something that’s said to cheer you up
      when you come home early and find your lover
      arched over a stranger in a scarlet thong.

      Or it could be you lose your job at Happy Nails
      because you can’t stop smudging the stars
      on those ten teeny American flags.

      I don’t begrudge you your extravagant vitality.
      May it blossom like a cherry tree. May the petals
      of your cardiovascular excellence
      and the accordion polka of your lungs
      sweeten the mornings of your loneliness.

      But for the ill, for you with nerves that fire
      like a rusted-out burner on an old barbecue,
      with bones brittle as spun sugar,
      with a migraine hammering like a blacksmith

      in the flaming forge of your skull,
      may you be spared from friends who say,
      God doesn’t give you more than you can handle
      and ask what gifts being sick has brought you.

      May they just keep their mouths shut
      and give you French chocolates and daffodils
      and maybe a small, original Matisse,
      say, Open Window, Collioure, so you can look out
      at the boats floating on the dappled pink water.

      • Love this poem, too! I can’t believe it. I just read this one in December. French chocolates are way better than platitudes. I am better and better, gradually. It feels so good. Counting the days, for sure!

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