As the fireman said:
Don't book a room over the fifth floor
in any hotel in New York.
They have ladders that will reach further
but no one will climb them.
As the New York Times said:
The elevator always seeks out
the floor of the fire
and automatically opens
and won't shut.
These are the warnings
that you must forget
if you're climbing out of yourself.
If you're going to smash into the sky.

Many times I've gone past
the fifth floor,
cranking upward,
but only once
have I gone all the way up.
Sixtieth floor:
small plants and swans bending
into their grave.
Floor two hundred:
mountains with the patience of a cat,
silence wearing its sneakers.
Floor five hundred:
messages and letters centuries old,
birds to drink,
a kitchen of clouds.
Floor six thousand:
the stars,
skeletons on fire,
their arms singing.
And a key,
a very large key,
that opens something —
some useful door —
somewhere —
up there.

- Anne Sexton (1975)


Anonymous said...

To a Milkweed

Anonymous as cherubs
Over the crib of God,
White seeds are floating
Out of my burst pod.
What power had I
Before I learned to yield?
Shatter me, great wind:
I shall possess the field.

--Richard Wilbur (1921- )

Anonymous said...

With my last comment, I sent it before I took time to introduce it. Suzie has been introducing me to a lot of poetry lately. I really liked this one and wanted to share it with you (the To a Milkweed one) since you put me in the poem mood. Hope you enjoy it.

Here is another one I found interesting too.

Curriculum Vitae*

The future shrinks
Whether the past
Is well or badly spent.

We shape our lives
Although their forms
Are never what we meant.

--Dana Gioia (1950- ) [pronounced JOY-uh]

*definition: resume; latin=the course of one's life or career