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i thank You God for this most amazing

When I taught, I used e. e. cummings not just during poetry lessons, but to point out to students we did not always have to follow rules when writing. Following Cummings’ writing, I told students to get thoughts down on paper and we could edit later.

Cummings did not break rules of writing in his poetry. As we see in the first line of this poem, he capitalized two words.

I took the message as opening my eyes and ears to the world around me. As I walked this morning, I noticed birds chirping. One scrambled to hide under a truck parked along the street. In another place, there was a smell of something rotting, maybe someone fertilizing. The wind was chilly, but, when the sun emerged from hiding, i warmed me.

The sounds, sights, smells, touches of the world awaken my senses on those walks. They are like the flow of water I hear from a distance as I approach the river that tumbles over the edge. When I am mindful, I sense nature in a fuller way.

i thank You God for most this amazing
day:for the leaping greenly spirits of trees
and a blue true dream of sky; and for everything
which is natural which is infinite which is yes

(i who have died am alive again today,
and this is the sun’s birthday; this is the birth
day of life and of love and wings: and of the gay
great happening illimitably earth)

how should tasting touching hearing seeing
breathing any–lifted from the no
of all nothing–human merely being
doubt unimaginable You?

(now the ears of my ears awake and
now the eyes of my eyes are opened)

We took this picture in Yellowstone.


I enjoy e. e. cummings‘ poetry. I read it several times and it reminded me of my other reading today. I read Alfred North Whitehead for part of the afternoon. It has been pretty circular as well, but at the end it comes to the same point. Life is full of uncertainty and mystery which is what is worth embracing. A good portion of life is missed if I am not attentive and mindful of the world.

how many moments must(amazing each

how many centuries)these more than eyes

restroll and stroll some never deepening beach

locked in foreverish time’s tide at poise,

love alone understands:only for whom

i’ll keep my tryst until that tide shall turn;

and from all selfsubtracting hugely doom

treasures of reeking innocence are born.

Then, with not credible the anywhere

eclipsing of a spirit’s ignorance

by every wisdom knowledge fears to dare,

how the(myself’s own self who’s)child will dance!

and when he’s plucked such mysteries as men

do not conceive–let ocean grow again

You Shall Above All Things

When I teach poetry, I always include ee cummings. I include him for several reasons. First, he was a pretty good poet. Second. junior high students worry too much about style and conventions. Third, he was a rebel and junior high students like rebels. Fourth, and I doubt it is last, he had something important to say like all good rebels.

I am not sure our schedule. We leave within the hour and will be on the road most of tomorrow. If I do not find my way back to the Internet, I wish you all a good New Year.

you shall above all things be glad and young.

For if you`re young, whatever life you wear

it will become you;and if you are glad

whatever`s living will yourself become.

Girlboys may nothing more than boygirls need;

i can entirely her only love

whose any mystery makes every man`s

flesh put space;and his mind take off time

that you should every think, may god forbid

and(in his mercy)your true lover spare:

for that way knowledge lies,the foetal grave

called progress,and negation`s dead undoom.

I’d rather learn from one bird how to sing

then teach ten thousand stars how not to dance.

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