Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Long Day of Work

For Three Word Wednesday, prompt words battle, fluid, harvest. Also submitted to dVerse. I don't know how much chance I'll have to visit other blogs this week--work calls me, which may explain the subject of my poem this week.


Long Day of Work

I’ve been told that life
is a battle, and as metaphors
go I don’t think much of it.
I prefer to see life

as a long day of work,
as if each hour
was just one more row
to harvest, some easier

than others. The hard rows
call for occasional rest
under a shady oak,
where there’s no shame

in taking it. At the end
of the day, a cold beer
and drowsy drifting
into fluid sleep.

32 comments:

  1. drowsy drifting into fluid sleep..what a wonderful line..and wonderful thought..i would imagine sleep is rich when life is seen as a day to be harvested..not a battle..just how do you do that..

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    1. Thank you, Jae. The how is definitely the sticking point, especially when it feels like we are under siege. There's a couple of things I try to do:

      -Realize that while I cannot control every aspect of life, I can control the metaphor. That is part of the "deeper" (not that it's particularly deep) meanings of the poem. We control the metaphor, and I find metaphor to be all-important in poetry and life--it determines the tone of a poem and a life.

      -This is so commonplace a saying, but I try to cultivate stillness. Poetry, meditation, a quiet hour of reading, and/or a glass of good Kentucky bourbon usually works for me.

      -I try to remember that there is shade up ahead.

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    2. Wise advice..days may not be perfect but I guess accepting that..finding shade..and even Bourbon..helps you find your place amongst the hours and minutes...

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    3. I made it sound too easy--that was unintentional, and far from wise advice. Some of us have harder rows to work than others, and there is very little comfort to be had. Hopefully I'd be the kind of person who'd be glad to leave my row for a while to help a struggling neighbor out.

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    1. Thanks, Sheilagh, that means a lot to me.

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  3. Life as a long day of work... very interesting. I'd much rather play.

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    1. Thanks Laurie--yes, play is a necessary balance. Play can even become a part of the work, if it's done right.

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  4. smiles...i will clink bottles with you at the end of those days...and i like the thought of the day being something to harvest...truth in that...

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    1. Brian, thank you, and I return your toast. A sower went forth to sow . . . and now we harvest life.

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  5. Fresh, inventive take on the three words...

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  6. Sounds like this week will bring lots of hard work so enjoy your fluid sleep!

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    1. Thank you Robyn--my job called for some overtime this week, but I ended up having some time off today--trying to catch up on all the great poetry written this week!

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  7. Very fun -- great flip of that phrase.
    But I must tell you. My official (green card) Chinese name is Zhan Xiang which means "propituous battle" -- I made the name myself. Because I don't looks at battles negatively -- I love martial arts. Likewise, I have no trouble comparing life to a game -- because I highly respect games -- well, only because I play WeiQi.

    Thank you for the DAILY harvest metaphor for life, it will help brighten my world. Well, that, and a cold beer !!

    PS : Interestingly, some blogger sites allow URL enteries, yours doesn't, do you know why? (following)

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    1. Thanks Sabio. Yeah, I understand what you're saying here. What I was trying to point at is the idea that life (as battle) means that life is all about opposition, an "us vs. them" approach, even an enemy to be annihilated. There are times the metaphor is true, but I still don't like it! And, as I mentioned in a response to Laurie above, I see the place of play/game metaphor in life as well.

      I have no idea why URL entries are not allowed--I'll look into it, but I have to admit that I'm not tech savvy in the least, so pardon me if I fail to figure it out.

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    2. My comments are set on Registered Users, which is I suppose the Blogger default setting. It seems that in order to allow URL comments I have to allow anonymous comments, which evidently opens the door to spammers. There is some downloads I can install, some kind of comment program or something or the other, I'll see if I can find time to work that in. If people are nice enough to comment, I should make it as easy as possible!

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    3. OK. I installed a comment plugin, lost all of my old comments, panicked, cursed, and uninstalled it. I think we're back to normal now, and I'm going to have to be content to leave things as they are for now, with my apologies to you and anyone else troubled by the Blogger commenting system.

      (Just noticed in my comment above I wrote, "There is some downloads"--ha ha! I speak English real good.

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  8. nico, yes, well done. you've described life in easy going take
    life as she is terms. thank you.

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    1. Thank Paige--easy going, yes, "don't let the sound of your own wheels drive you crazy." (From a great Eagles song!)

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  9. The beauty of our lives is that we (for the most part) have the choice to take whatever road we like. We can laugh at adversity and cry with pleasure, it's all the same in the end. How is that when I read your work my mind takes a tangent!

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    1. Thanks Rob, for wandering around with me. Some days you just have to say, "Well, that was pretty shitty." But with a little beer, a little sleep, we make it through.

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  10. absolutely perfect. I think you're spot on with it being more a harvest than a battle.

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    1. Thank you, RMP. I didn't have time to develop it, but I had an idea for a stanza that mentioned working side by side with neighbors--life is shared work, I think, or at least it makes it easier if it's shared with friends.

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  11. Replies
    1. Thanks J., and coming from you means a lot--since you are the Epitome of Smooth!

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  12. Lovely poem, with beautiful thoughts. Here am I - wishing, wishing.
    Long retired, I now find myself with more work and serious responsibility than ever before. The cold beer is easy; restful, fluid sleep is hard to come by - and for my dear wife, impossible.

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    1. Thanks Leigh. Even in retirement we have rows to hoe. Just make sure not to pass up any shade trees along the way. I am sorry to hear about your wife--that makes life difficult indeed. Please pass along my sympathy and well wishes.

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  13. Well, I installed a comment plug-in thingy, and it seems to have eaten up all my comments. Shit! It could be that the program has not registered yet, so I'll give it some time, especially since I cannot seem to figure out how to uninstall the program. I'm beginning to wonder if technology is the real enemy . . .

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    1. Now where the hellfire did this come from! Yeah I wrote it, but I thought I got rid of the program it was written in. Oh well. At least now I can see all the old comments. Life is a battle . . .

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  14. That's a good vision.

    I also especially like the break between the 3rd and 4th stanzas.

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    1. Thanks M.A.S., I'm happy you liked it!

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