Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Things Shouldn't Be So Hard

Kay Ryan (2001)

A life should leave
deep tracks:
ruts where she
went out and back
to get the mail
or move the hose
around the yard;
where she used to
stand before the sink,
a worn out place;
beneath her hand,
the china knobs
rubbed down to
white pastilles;
the switch she
used to feel for
in the dark
almost erased.
Her things should
keep her marks.
The passage
of a life should show;
it should abrade.
And when life stops,
a certain space
—however small—
should be left scarred
by the grand and
damaging parade.
Things shouldn't
be so hard.


dan said...

from The New Yorker (June 4, 2001)

author bio: Kay Ryan

dan said...

I have two books of her poetry: Say Uncle and Elephant Rocks

meggie said...

this poem is so simple, and yet has a strong feminist streak to it. It emphasizes the beauty of a womenan's life; all of the simple aspects that composes it, and that are often unappreciated and underacknowledged.

Anonymous said...

I read it years ago, before my mother passed away, and I knew I would keep it and write it down for her someday. It says what we feel about the passing of our mothers and grandmothers and why wasn't there more noise, this is major...I am so grateful for this poet.

Martin Cooper said...

A tender, poignant, masterful poem.

Thank you so much.

My dear Mother passed away
Five years to this very day
Neither catastrophe
Nor tragedy
Can dissever
These loving Hearts
Entwined forever

Martin Cooper

Iris said...

They moved mugs from cabinet to counter, but there are no grooves. They sat seated, giving all their weight to that meditation pillow, but now it’s only sun faded. They are no longer with their life and now it’s disloyal and unaffected by their departure.
I wish I was that hard.