Inspiration: Poems

Poem: “Fear,” by Kahlil Gibran

Poem: “Fear,” by Kahlil Gibran

It is said that before entering the sea a river trembles with fear. She looks back at the path she has traveled, from the peaks of the mountains, the long winding road crossing forests and villages. And in front of her, she sees an ocean so vast, that to enter there...

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Poem: “Television,” by Roald Dahl

Poem: “Television,” by Roald Dahl

The most important thing we've learned, So far as children are concerned, Is never, NEVER, NEVER let Them near your television set -- Or better still, just don't install The idiotic thing at all. In almost every house we've been, We've watched them gaping at the...

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Poem: “Passover,” by Primo Levi

Poem: “Passover,” by Primo Levi

Tell me: how is this night different From all other nights? How, tell me, is this Passover Different from other Passovers? Light the lamp, open the door wide So the pilgrim can come in, Gentile or Jew; Under the rags perhaps the prophet is concealed. Let him enter and...

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POEM: “Small Kindnesses,” by Danusha Laméris

POEM: “Small Kindnesses,” by Danusha Laméris

I’ve been thinking about the way, when you walk down a crowded aisle, people pull in their legs to let you by. Or how strangers still say “bless you” when someone sneezes, a leftover from the Bubonic plague. “Don’t die,” we are saying. And sometimes, when you spill...

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Poem: “Pandemic,” by Lynn Ungar

Poem: “Pandemic,” by Lynn Ungar

What if you thought of it as the Jews consider the Sabbath— the most sacred of times? Cease from travel. Cease from buying and selling. Give up, just for now, on trying to make the world different than it is. Sing. Pray. Touch only those to whom you commit your life....

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POEM: “Hope,” by Lisel Mueller

POEM: “Hope,” by Lisel Mueller

It hovers in dark corners before the lights are turned on, it shakes sleep from its eyes and drops from mushroom gills, it explodes in the starry heads of dandelions turned sages, it sticks to the wings of green angels that sail from the tops of maples. It sprouts in...

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Poem: “Love,” by Czeslaw Milosz

Poem: “Love,” by Czeslaw Milosz

Love means to learn to look at yourself The way one looks at distant things For you are only one thing among many. And whoever sees that way heals his heart, Without knowing it, from various ills— A bird and a tree say to him: Friend. Then he wants to use himself and...

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Poem: “Antilamentation,” by Dorianne Laux

Poem: “Antilamentation,” by Dorianne Laux

Regret nothing. Not the cruel novels you read to the end just to find out who killed the cook, not the insipid movies that made you cry in the dark, in spite of your intelligence, your sophistication, not the lover you left quivering in a hotel parking lot, the one...

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