Thursday, 30 April 2009

Poem of the week

This lovely poem by Wislawa Szymborska, was posted in the comments of Justine Picardie's blog and I felt the need to share the joy.

"In Praise of My Sister."

My sister does not write poems
and it's unlikely she'll suddenly start writing poems.
She takes after her mother, who did not write poems,
and after her father, who also did not write poems.
Under my sister's roof I feel safe:
nothing would move my sister's husband to write poems.
And although it sounds like a poem by Adam Macedonski,
none of my relatives is engaged in the writing of poems.

In my sister's desk there are no old poems
nor any new ones in her handbag.
And when my sister invites me to dinner,
I know she has no intention of reading me poems.
She makes superb soups without half trying,
and her coffee does not spill on manuscripts.

In many families no one writes poems,
but when they do, it's seldom just one person.
Sometimes poetry flows in cascades of generations, which sets up fearsome eddies in family relations.

My sister cultivates a decent spoken prose,
her entire literary output is on vacation postcards
that promise the same thing every year:
that when she returns,
she'll tell us, everything,

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