Thursday, July 05, 2007

A Few Words on the Soul

by Wislawa Szymborska

m

We have a soul at times.

No one’s got it non-stop,

for keeps.

m

Day after day,

year after year

may pass without it.

m

Sometimes

it will settle for awhile

only in childhood’s fears and raptures.

Sometimes only in astonishment

that we are old.

m

It rarely lends a hand

in uphill tasks,

like moving furniture,

or lifting luggage,

or going miles in shoes that pinch.

m

It usually steps out

whenever meat needs chopping

or forms have to be filled.

m

For every thousand conversations

it participates in one,

if even that,

since it prefers silence.

m

Just when our body goes from ache to pain,

it slips off-duty.

m

It’s picky:

it doesn’t like seeing us in crowds,

our hustling for a dubious advantage

and creaky machinations make it sick.

m

Joy and sorrow

aren’t two different feelings for it.

It attends us

only when the two are joined.

m

We can count on it

when we’re sure of nothing

and curious about everything.

m

Among the material objects

it favors clocks with pendulums

and mirrors, which keep on working

even when no one is looking.

m

It won’t say where it comes from

or when it’s taking off again,

though it’s clearly expecting such questions.

m

We need it

but apparently

it needs us

for some reason too.

m

via arghfuckkill and wood_s_lot

1 comment:

Princess Haiku said...

I like this a lot Moon. Very perceptive.