Poetry for Life

I follow a daily blog of Justin Wise, co-founder of thirdspace coaching in which last week one of his posts referred to a short volume of poetry which I have actually had sitting on my bookcase for ten years.

The address for the article is given here which I recommend to you.


The volume of poetry referred to is called “ten poems to change your life” compiled by Roger Housden and in response to this timely article on my journey of self-discovery, I reached for this little volume and I was surprised at my response to the poetry compared to how I had reacted to the poems when I first received the book (as a gift for my 40th birthday).

I noticed that I am far more able, than I was aware of a few years ago, to connect my life to the messages that each of these carefully selected poems had to give.

I connected with some more than others and for example in “Love after Love” by Derek Walcott the following line stirred within me an intense emotion:

“You will love again the stranger who was your self”

Oh, how true, but in order for this to happen, I have had to invest huge energy in being calm and find within me the courage to recognise that those aspects of me that I most feared and rejected are in fact no longer a stranger, but a friend.

and in “For the Anniversary of my Death” by W.S. Merwin this sentence

“Then I will no longer

Find myself in life as in a strange garment”

I don’t know why my friend bought me this book of poems over ten years ago, perhaps it was because I was at a life changing age of 40 at the time, but I suspect that her reasons for doing so, were more her response to my pain which I thought was hidden.

Ten years ago, I could not connect to the stranger within me, but thanks to Justin’s post I have been able to point to a massive progress within my life to befriend the stranger within.

My next blog will be:            Familiarity

William Defoe

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