Monday, November 10, 2008

From Bad to Worse. Sometimes Not.

We had a party at our house this past weekend. Having planned it weeks ago, we billed it as a "Post-Election Celebration and/or Wake" depending on how a person voted and how it went on Tuesday. Given how it went and given we live in Vermont, the first state to be officially called for Obama, it was about 96% celebration. It was the most cheerful crowd I've been among since my high school graduation and without the mood-altering substances.
It was only after everyone had left and we were left basking in the afterglow of an evening with our good friends and neighbors that I remembered a poem I had intended to read as a toast, so I'll share it here.
This little poem by Welsh poet, Sheenagh Pugh, has been permanently on my computer's desktop since I discovered it some ten years ago. For me it has served as comfort and companion during bleak days and I cannot read it even after thousands of times without feeling -- how else to say it -- Hope. I've sent it to many a struggling or heartbroken friend over the years, but this week it seemed to morph into less of a comfort than a promise fulfilled. I use it here without the author's permission, so please give proper credit to the poet if you decide to pass this along yourself.


Sometimes things don't go, after all,
from bad to worse. Some years, muscadel
faces down frost; green thrives; the crops don't fail.
Sometimes a man aims high, and all goes well.

A people sometimes will step back from war,
elect an honest man, decide they care
enough, that they can't leave some stranger poor.
Some men become what they were born for.

Sometimes our best intentions do not go
amiss; sometimes we do as we meant to.
The sun will sometimes melt a field of sorrow
that seemed hard frozen; may it happen for you.

© Current Tom Bodett
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