Opening Poetry and Art Books at Random Each Morning Sparks Hope (Naomi Shahab Nye + Joseph Albers)

Because we are aware of a sea of gloom so close under the skin, we’re always on the lookout for reminders of other ways of viewing things. So every morning, before reading anything else, we open a book of poetry or an art book —sometimes both — at random, a practice we’ve found invariably sets a positive tone for the day.  Today we struck gold. We’re dazzled by what we found in Naomi Shahab Nye’s poem Moment* and Joseph Albers luminous painting:

To the woman who handed over
a folded note, I have enough time
—on a thin slip of pinkish paper,
no name or address—you’re first
in mind this January 1.
Where did we meet?
You smiled shyly, stepped away.
Do you pass that note often?
Maybe you’re a friend dropping lines
when you detect a listener.
And what am I?
There’s a fine soup
to be made of every minute.
A way to stand and stir
so no one catches what you’re doing.
And there’s a sea of gloom
so close under the skin
that loves the taunt of a crisp new year.
Here, this fresh morning
and every to follow,
cabinet of stacked white
bowls, shines wide and plenty.
Each square of the calendar 
opens its hungry mouth.

 

…such possibilities in each day…

 

There’s a fine soup to be made of every minute.

 

 

 *from Transfer by Naomi Shihab Nye

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