®

Today's poem is by Mary Jo Firth Gillett

What I Believe,
with Four Final Words from Li-Young Lee


I believe there is no freedom
but the kite will tug at the string anyway.

I believe in the ditch but also the cattail
and the red-winged blackbird, the body
balanced and bobbing on a stem.

I believe there is always birdsong
but no one hears it all the time;
I believe sometimes there is no song—

I believe we exist to subvert what we believe.

I believe in the feral cat tense on its haunches,
the soft pleasure of its electric fur.

I believe when the lights go out, and they will,
the waters of Niagara still pound.

I believe lovers, even when they are afraid,
make good use of the dark.

I believe in the bodacious mind—the fear,
the exhilaration, the tenacity. And the bruises.

I believe a kiss will not make it all better
but might make it worthwhile.

I believe in the locomotive engine of the past,
its heft, its power, the shadow it casts.

I believe in the hairball, and other reasons
for ambivalence.

I believe in disparity—the Grand Canyon
and the paper cut.

I believe in acts of free will, the mind in freefall.

I believe every moment is manifold.



Copyright © 2002 Mary Jo Firth Gillett All rights reserved
from The MacGuffin
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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