Friday, January 20, 2012

Hope is the thing with feathers

When I was sixteen I found a very old book of poetry that belonged to my great-grandmother, Doris Eklund.  She was also a published poet, and a very intriguing woman.  It was a quiet and rainy day, so I took the book into bed with me, and dove right in.  I think that this was the day that my love affair with poetry, literature, and collecting texts began.  It was a gift that my long-deceased great-grandmother Doris gave me; and one of the greatest gifts I have ever received.

This is the poem that started it all for me:

"Hope" is the thing with feathers --
That perches in the soul --
And sings the tune without the words --
And never stops -- at all --

And sweetest -- in the Gale -- is heard --
And sore must be the storm --
That could abash the little Bird
That kept so many warm --

I've heard it in the chillest land --
And on the strangest Sea --
Yet, never, in Extremity,
It asked a crumb -- of Me.

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