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To Shape Our Decisions

Text of Poem

The question is
whether to choose
or do what comes first to hand.
(What difference did it make,
in the long run, which came first,
the chicken or the egg?)
But I am egged on (pardon)
by an uneasy conscience
to shovel out the ashes
from yesterday’s fires.
If I chicken out (there I go again!)
piles of junk won’t be moved
before winter sets its heel
on our days. Spring and summer
seemed endless, yet time creeps up,
strength runs down like an old clock,
blood slows its pulse.
Then let chores be light
and decisions easy.
It is not in ourselves, dear friends,
but in the pressures we feel
that point the road we take.

First Line
The question is
Original Pub Location
Original Publication Date
Original Citation
The Complete Poems of James Hearst. Ed. Scott Cawelti. Iowa City: University of Iowa Press, 2001. 505.
Complete Poems
Word Count
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Twitter Quote
strength runs down like an old clock