August 30, 2011

Not Poor

La Branche, by Marc Chagall

We are not poor. We are just without riches,
we who have no will, no world:
marked with the marks of the latest anxiety,
disfigured, stripped of leaves.

Around us swirls the dust of the cities,
the garbage clings to us.
We are shunned as if contaminated,
thrown away like broken pots, like bones,
like last year's calendar.

And yet if our Earth needed to
she could weave us together like roses
and make of us a garland.

For each being is cleaner than washed stones
and endlessly yours, and like an animal
who knows already in its first blind moments
its need for one thing only—

to let ourselves be poor like that—as we truly are.

The Book of Hours III, 16


  1. This is like a ladder I can climb up, then down. If I read this each day it would be like a shedding of a skin, starting over, being born again.

  2. Wow! On a dark day, read that and smile, washed clean and fresh and knowing what is needed! Beautiful.

  3. Strip us of our trappings and we are all the same--yes. "as we truly are" Why do we never remember this?


"Everything is blooming most recklessly; if it were voices instead of colors, there would be an unbelievable shrieking into the heart of the night."

~ Rainer Maria Rilke

Go ahead, bloom recklessly!