Sunday, October 14, 2007


I had already posted a quote today, but I just realized it is e. e. cummings' birthday, so I think a post of one of his poems is more appropriate. I'll put the quote back up on another day.

In thinking of his life and work I'm reminded of lines that have captured me having to do with life and death - in a poem that has to do with really living while alive. He says that life is not a paragraph and death is no parenthesis. Notice the singular tense; usually parentheses come in pairs. Not so of life, he says. If we think of birth as the opening parenthesis that begins our "phrase" of life:


it is a phrase that is not closed off. Death does not close the "phrase." We begin, but we do not end. So here's to you ee!! May your spirit and your work live on!


since feeling is first
who pays any attention
to the syntax of things
will never wholly kiss you;

wholly to be a fool
while Spring is in the world

my blood approves,
and kisses are a better fate
than wisdom
lady i swear by all flowers. Don't cry
the best gesture of my brain is less than
your eyelids' flutter which says

we are for each other:then
laugh,leaning back in my arms
for life's not a paragraph

And death i think is no parenthesis

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