Happiness in Verse

Three Poems by Jane Hirshfield

Jane Hirshfield

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Pocket of Fog

In the next door yard,
a pocket of fog like a small herd of bison
swallows azaleas, koi pond, the red and gold koi.

To be fully happy must mean not knowing you are.

The fog grazes here, then there,
all morning browsing the shallows,
leaving no footprints between my fate and
    the mountain’s.

Happiness Is Harder

To read a book of poetry
from back to front,
there is the cure for certain kinds of sadness.

A person has only to choose.
What doesn’t matter; just that—

This coffee. That dress.
“Here is the time I would like to arrive.”
“Today, I will wash the windows.”

Happiness is harder.

Consider the masters’ description
of awakened existence, how seemingly simple:
Hungry, I eat; sleepy, I sleep. Is this choosing completely,
or not at all?

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