a poem for anxiety about the future

Hello my friends,

Anxieties over the Coronavirus have escalated extremely quickly over the past few days, at least where I am in the UK. I hope you and all those close to you, especially anyone who’s particularly vulnerable, are okay at this very stressful time.

At a time like this, poetry might seem useless or even insensitive. After all, a poem is not a vaccine. But on the other hand, once we have taken the necessary precautions, there is not much else we can do but try to take care of each other and ourselves; to carve out some peace and space for connection amidst a chaos and isolation which could easily overwhelm us.

The poem below is about finding that peace, if only ‘for a time’. I love the promise of ‘the day-blind stars / waiting with their light’. I hope it brings you some comfort too.

The Peace of Wild Things, by Wendell Berry

When despair for the world grows in me
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light. For a time
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.

◊◊◊

Take care,

Tanvi xxx

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