Friday, February 3, 2012

A Few Words On The Soul

We have a soul at times.
No one's got it nonstop,
for keeps.

Day after day,
year after year
may pass without it.

it will settle for a while
only in childhood fears and raptures.
Sometimes in astonishment
that we are old.

It rarely lends a hand
in uphill tasks,
like moving furniture,
or lifting luggage,
or going miles in shoes that pinch.

It usually steps out
whenever meat needs chopping
or forms have to be filled.

For every thousand conversations
it participates in one
if even that,
since it prefers silence.

Just when your body goes from ache to pain,
it slips off duty.

It's picky:
It doesn't like seeing us in crowds,
or hustling for a dubious advantage
and creaky machinations make it sick.

Joy and sorrow
aren't two different feelings for it.
It attends us
only when the two are joined.

We can count on it
when we're sure of nothing
and curious about everything.

Among the material objects
it favors clocks with pendulums
and mirrors, which keep on working even when no one is looking.

It won't say where it comes from
or when it's taking off again,
though it's clearly expecting such questions.

We need it
but apparently
it needs us
for some reason to.

* A Few Words On The Soul

7-2-1923 ~ 2-1-2012

I was very sad to hear of Ms Szymborska's passing, I'm thankful for her words, her wit and her way of viewing this world, in her poetry and books she will live on and continue to inspire.

Have a good weekend lovely souls.
I really am going to a superbowl party, deal me in.........
xo Ro


  1. I did not know of her..thank you for sharing! A unique way of understanding soul. Hey Ro, enjoy the superbowl party. I look forward to all the advertising in addition to the game! xx

    1. Since I'm not a sports fan those commercials keep me going.... :) oh the junk food is good too!

      Have a good weekend xoxox

  2. I shivered (in a good way) as I read this remarkable poem - then when I got to your words & the news of her passing....Haven't read many of her poems (so far) but am SO thankful for discovering her through you.

    Btw, the new turquoise ring on Etsy is STUNNING!!!


    1. She was so funny too Priscilla, I can see that twinkle in her eye.
      ......."and mirrors, which keep on working even when no one is looking" :)

      Woody Allen made a documentary on her, I'd love to see it even though I doubt it's been translated.

      I miss her already........she has a final unpublished book, we'll have to wait for it to be translated, I'll let you know when it's out.

      Thank you for the ring love.


  3. Oh.

    Thank you for the gift of this poem. I could steep in this all day. I had not heard of her've honored her in fine fashion on your trail...and will continue to do so, I'm sure, which is all any writer lives for, to share the words....

    1. She published so many wonderful poems it's hard to pick a favorite.

      As a writer yourself I know what you mean the same is true for all the arts.

      Have a good weekend xoxoxox

  4. Oh, how wonderful this poem is....thank you. I had also not heard of her passing. I am so thankful that she blessed this earth with her presence, and her remarkable creativity.

    There is a great article on Wislawa written by Adam Gopnik. If you search for "Wislawa Szymborska" and "New Yorker" you'll see an article that references it. Just click on "tribute" within the text when the page opens.....

    (I just learned that I share the same birthday as W. for me to picture celebrating on the same date! )

    P.S. Happy Superbowl everyone!

    1. When I was reading obits it was really strange because all the ones I read included quotes from a local Claremont poetry teacher my girlfriend and I were just talking about. Apparently he traveled to Poland to meet her, now I need to meet him. Isn't it funny, those concentric circles of life.

      I'm off to read the article and now there's two reasons to celebrate on July 2nd!

      GOOOOOOO Pat's xoxoxoxo

  5. Thank you for posting this wonderful poem!
    I like her sense of humor!
    I must search her out & read more!
    You have a way of introducing such good things into my life...

    GO 49'ers!!!

  6. I hope you do read more Nancy.
    I adore her, I read that she always liked a good prank and I thought, me too!!!

    pachyderm tango!!!!

    Good to see you smile.

    GO Niners!!!!!!!
    (extremely fickle sports fan here) looking forward to the fish tacos :)


    1. Fickle sports fan, indeed--at least you're celebrating with the rest of America tomorrow. AND you know who's playing....


      I would celebrate football, too, for good fish tacos....

      :-)Hope people enjoy the day!