Friday, September 11, 2009


No, I am not talking about the sort of self-portrait I might take crayon in hand to draw. If I drew a self-portrait of myself, it would look as if it were done by Picasso the morning after the world's worst drunken binge. Even considering the model I'd have to work with, it would be ugly.

I subscribe to Garrison Keillor's daily "Writers' Almanac" e-mail, which offers a poem each day along with other literary history trivia. Yesterday's poem was written by Mary Oliver, and is titled "Self Portrait." I think it's great...

I wish I was twenty and in love with life
and still full of beans.

Onward, old legs!
There are the long, pale dunes; on the other side
the roses are blooming and finding their labor
no adversity to the spirit.

Upward, old legs! There are the roses, and there is the sea
shining like a song, like a body
I want to touch

though I'm not twenty
and won't be again but ah! seventy. And still
in love with life. And still
full of beans.

Well, I'm not seventy yet (thank goodness), but yes, I wish I could be twenty again...but only if I knew what I've learned in the 38 years since I was last 20. And I'd still love to be full of beans instead of (as with so many in Congress and the media) full of ... uh ... never mind.

Have a good day. Tomorrow is Cartoon Saturday.



Amanda said...

I'm not twenty but I'm glad that I'm still a long way from seventy. There is the saying that 'age is just a number' but there really are so many things that I may no longer be able to do when I'm seventy.

The Mistress of the Dark said...

My gram would have loved that poem!

Mike said...

Yeah but when you were a kid you were treated like a kid. Don't worry, that time is coming again.

Be nice to your kids. They get to pick your nursing home.