A Brief History of Happiness

Screenshot 2014-07-27 07.15.26Today, we’re leaving for camping, so I’m posting Monday’s poem early. This is from a book called The Mansion of Happiness, by Robin Ekiss. There are many intriguing poems in the book, but here’s one I particularly like:

A Brief History of Happiness

In the beginning, there was nothing–
xxxx or rather,
nowhere else to start.

There was a girl buried
xxxx in the dark silt
of her own heart, ribs picketed

like a fence. There was the private
xxxx circumference of the yard,
a tree

with its poisoned crown
xxxx of leaving. She kept returning
to climb it—

its fragrance was undeniable,
xxxx the dangerous consequnce
of every day lived this way.

It’s just a muscle, she’d say,
xxxx nothing compared
to walls or words.

There wasn’t a prince
xxxx but there was a moon:
new, full, or quartered.

A house with many storied widows,
xxxx incomplete encircling,
not knowing

when to return
xxxx or what to return to.
Even nothing was some place

to start.  Some machines
xxxx like memory, rewind—
others move forward

with mad knowledge,
xxxx uncontrollable want:
there is no other kind.

Robin Ekiss

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