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Optimism, a Poem

Optimism is a poem by E.C. Belli from her debut collection of poems, Objects of Hunger. True to its title, the poem is about optimism, but not in an obvious way. The poem speaks of a ‘rust’ morning and how the ‘incompetent’ heart speaks the language of ‘stones’. In these selection of words, one senses a weariness present, a weathered and familiar state of heaviness, inertness, and despair. However, hope pervades throughout: in the warmth of the sun, in the life of the fields and seeds, and present over the darkness, softly awash and giving way to light. The seeming paradox of dark and light–despair and hope–is in fact a duality, natural in their coexistence.

“Rust morning. Again,
the incompetent heart speaks
the language of stones.
I tell you, in the voice
of the old poet: move it
into the sun. It will warm.
Like the fields and their seeds,
the clay and beams.
Happiness is a riot of endless
limbs. You say, Hope
is the light at the end–
I say, It is what keeps us
drenched and dredging
through the darkness
for one day more.”

Image Credits:
Feature Image: Vraj Shah, on Pexels, Creative Commons