Wednesday, July 29, 2009

you should read this poem

Found this poem by Tony Hoagland in they July/August issue of Poetry.  


Personal

Don't take it personal, they said;
but I did, I took it all quite personal--

the breeze and the river and the color of the fields;
the price of grapefruit and stamps,

the wet hair of women in the rain--
And I cursed what hurt me

and I praised what gave me joy,
the most simple-minded of possible responses.

The government reminded me of my father,
with its deafness and its laws,

and the weather reminded me of my mom,
with her tropical squalls.

Enjoy it while you can, the said of Happiness
Think first, they said of Talk

Get over it, they said
at the School of Broken Hearts

but I couldn't and I didn't and I don't
believe in the clean break;

I believe in the compound fracture
served with a sauce of dirty regret,

I believe in saying it all
and taking it back

and saying it again for good measure
while the air fills up with I'm-Sorries

like wheeling birds
and the trees look seasick in the wind.

Oh life!  Can you blame me
for making a scene?

You were that yellow caboose, the moon
disappearing over a ridge of cloud.

I was the dog, chained in some fool's backyard;
barking and barking:

trying to convince everything else
to take it personal too.


8 comments:

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

This is the most powerful grieving poem I've ever read.

Coco said...

I like it.

LadyFi said...

That is a fabulous poem - very thought-provoking.

52 Faces said...

oooh thanks! I haven't done poetry in a while

flutter said...

I love this~

Happy Campers said...

thanks for sharing..

bernthis said...

simple, elegant and for me, at least, finally, comprehensive.

Maggie May said...

wonderful, holy cow.