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[Thank goodness it doesn't bug you often]

Text of Poem

Thank goodness it doesn’t bug you often,
but like this morning you sit at your
desk and don’t do anything, not even
sharpen a pencil or pay some bills or
look over the papers you laid out for
the morning’s work. No, you sit there
with your head in your hands and find
yourself appalled by the repetition of
your days. You get up when the alarm clock
rings, do the bathroom chores, dress,
eat breakfast, smoke a cigarette, glance
at the headlines, kiss your wife a quickie
and open the garage door to get the car
out to drive to the office. You do this
over and over again, day after day after
day as if you were some kind of a weed
that seeds itself, grows up, makes a flower
and seeds itself again. What’s the point
of it all, you ask yourself, is this life?
You think of the care spent to bring you up, keep you well,
clothed, fed, educated, just to go on
doing what you do while you grow older and
grayer and fatter and acquire a few aches
and pains. Is this what all the preparation
for life is about? You won’t live forever.
And then you jot down memoranda on your desk
calendar for three or four months ahead, just as if you would.

First Line
Thank goodness it doesn’t bug you often,
Original Pub Location
Original Publication Date
Original Citation
Planting Red Geraniums: Discovered Poems of James Hearst. Final Thursday Press, 2017. 33.
Complete Poems
Hearst Collections
Word Count

Permission to reproduce work from the James Hearst Papers has been granted by the Special Collections Department of the University of Iowa Libraries.

Poetic Form