Thursday 20 March 2014

Now is a gift. That’s why they call it the present.

I was thinking today (it being my birthday and all) about the essence of giving and receiving, which is to share simply, open-handedly and open-heartedly, without expectation of gratitude or return. I was reminded of two poems, which I would like to share with you. Call it a gift.


A blade of grass

You ask for a poem.
I offer you a blade of grass.
You say it is not good enough.
You ask for a poem.

I say this blade of grass will do.
It has dressed itself in frost,
It is more immediate
Than any image of my making.

You say it is not a poem,
It is a blade of grass and grass
Is not quite good enough.
I offer you a blade of grass.

You are indignant.
You say it is too easy to offer grass.
It is absurd.
Anyone can offer a blade of grass.

You ask for a poem.
And so I write you a tragedy about
How a blade of grass
Becomes more and more difficult to offer,

And about how as you grow older
A blade of grass
Becomes more difficult to accept.

by Brian Patten

I never feel more given to
than when you take from me,
when you understand the joy I feel
giving to you.
And you know my giving isn't done
to put you in my debt,
but because I want to live the love
I feel for you.
To receive with grace
may be the greatest giving.
There's no way I can separate
the two.
When you give to me,
I give you my receiving.
When you take from me. I feel so
given to.

by Ruth Bebermeyer


  1. Lovely poems!

  2. Thanks, Chris, I'm glad you like them. The first one, the Blade of Grass one, I have known for years. The other I only came across a year or so ago. Both are so very moving to me. ~Marty