Walking Chicago streets is not as conducive to internalizing poems as a walk in the mountains. It’s been a good lesson adapting. The city light in the videos recorded irk me, highlighting my waddle, there are people everywhere, talking and traffic and sirens and no birdsong. Still it’s good to step outside perceived requirements for accomplishing a task, and do it anyway.
It’s been amusing turning heads as I stroll alleys, picking up garbage, reciting; I truly look like a crazy person.
The poem may sound cynical, but I don’t think that’s Merwin’s intent. I think he hears and honors the thank you in each moment. This week’s recitation, Thanks, by W.S. Merwin speaks more eloquently than I can these days of where my head is at.
Happy hump day; remain grateful.
A clever, important poem- beautifully read. I have never heard of WS Merwin- must look him/her up.
This memorization was my first experience with Merwin as well. I will definitely be reading more. I’m glad you enjoyed it 🙂
I do not know where to begin. First of all “Thank you” for sharing. Mostly I find Merwin’s “Thanks” thought provoking in so many layers. Some of those instances of thanks I must admit are very difficult to justify. Thought provoking indeed.
It is a challenging poem, it had me in tears many times as I was memorizing it. One of the reasons I was drawn to the poem, was that I realized I’d had so many of the negative experiences, the police at the door, the beating on the stairs(not me).
I experience, as we all do, the constant horror of our world of war and abuse and destruction. I believe the will to be grateful is a part of what keeps us human. “Dark though it is.” Peace to you David.
What a powerful poem, especially those last lines. Thank you for introducing it to me – and for introducing me to the author. I also like the image of you walking the streets of Chicago, collecting garbage for your art, reciting the poem – brilliant.
It’s funny I had heard of Merwin for many years, but never read him, then I found this poem and it really sideswiped me in a way…maybe it was being out of my natural element too. I felt some how grounded by the poem and the dirt in the alleys, walking with the homeless and their grocery carts, we were saying thank you, thank you…
Oh man, I am in tears. Thank you.
My pleasure Marjorie 🙂
Thanks Marjorie, it was sort of a tough one. Glad it touched you 🙂