Saturday, April 20, 2013

One Art
by Elizabeth Bishop

The art of losing isn't hard to master;
so many things seem filled with the intent
to be lost that their loss is no disaster.

Lose something every day. Accept the fluster
of lost door keys, the hour badly spent.
The art of losing isn't hard to master.

Then practice losing farther, losing faster:
places, and names, and where it was you meant
to travel. None of these will bring disaster.

I lost my mother's watch. And look! my last, or
next-to-last, of three loved houses went.
The art of losing isn't hard to master.

I lost two cities, lovely ones. And, vaster,
some realms I owned, two rivers, a continent.
I miss them, but it wasn't a disaster.

---Even losing you (the joking voice, a gesture
I love) I shan't have lied. It's evident
the art of losing's not too hard to master
though it may look like (Write it!) like disaster.


Bellezza said...

It's wonderful to read more poems during April's National Poetry Month; I'm sorely in need of reading, and understanding more. This topic of loss is a big one, from losing miscellaneous items to those we dearly love. Another lesson I need is how to bear the grief of losing a loved o e...cities I can manage, especially Chicago! ;)

Love the look here, and your new header.

Nadia said...

Bellezza, I know what you mean. I am in need of a good book. I just feel like I need something substantial to get lost in. I'm loving reading all the poems this month - they are full of depth and I love it. And, thanks! I wanted to shake things up a bit and so I just went for it :)

Vintage Reading said...

I love Elizabeth Bishop. Good to read this again.

Nadia said...

Vintage Reading, me too! I love this one! Glad you enjoyed reading it again :)

Lisa said...

What an interesting piece. Thanks for sharing it.

Nadia said...

Lisa, it is such a great piece - I'm glad you liked it :)