Thursday, May 31, 2007

panama, rosé, grief

In a shop window, I spy one of those old fashioned, panama hats, which you can fold up and put in your pocket. It has a crease across the crown, to make it easier

Some bottles of rosé from the Languedoc, in anticipation of guests and fine weather. It is very pale, what, in California, they call a "blush" wine.

Something I read in Lucy Kempton's blog, has stayed with me. She wrote of a conversation with her husband, Tom, in which he he referred to the modern, western world as being in "a continual state of low-level grief." It's hard not to recognise that state. It was a similar line of thought, which led me to a poem a year or so ago:

How to be cheerful

Adjust with care, the instructions in the handbook say,
For misalignments and breakdowns can occur,
Where balanced wheels are expected to engage and play.

Where the seesaw race begins, the dim, obsessive chime,
The winding up and unwinding of the spring.

Within the escapement's clutch, the seagulls scream
Notes of survival and the constancy of loss.

Yet yeasts ferment and prompt in the memory
How the Grosse Fugue's galloping colloquy goes
Further than sense can go, where laughter's the lingo:
Swifter than intelligence, deeper than instinct,
You won't know sad from glad then, or need to know.

Pick up this theme: even if our revels all aren't ended,
A silent smile will open like an estuary,
Spread wide its waters, where oysters have long bred
And wading birds among the reeds can taste the sea.

1 comment:

Lucy said...

Thanks Joe. Honoured.