“Small Comfort” by Katha Pollitt
Poetry 180: A Poem a Day for American High Schools, Hosted by Billy Collins, U.S. Poet Laureate, 2001-2003
Coffee and cigarettes in a clean cafe, forsythia lit like a damp match against a thundery sky drunk on its own ozone, the laundry cool and crisp and folded away again in the lavender closet-too late to find comfort enough in such small daily moments of beauty, renewal, calm, too late to imagine people would rather be happy than suffering and inflicting suffering. We're near the end, but O before the end, as the sparrows wing each night to their secret nests in the elm's green dome O let the last bus bring love to lover, let the starveling dog turn the corner and lope suddenly miraculously, down its own street, home.
from The New Yorker.
Copyright by Katha Pollitt.
All rights reserved.
Reprinted by permission of Katha Pollitt from The New Yorker. Copyright by Katha Pollitt. For further permissions information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
About the Poet
Born in New York City, poet, political columnist, and personal essayist Katha Pollitt (1949- ) was educated at Radcliffe and earned an MFA from Columbia University. Pollitt is a columnist for The Nation, is the author of two poetry collections, including The Mind-Body Problem: Poems (Random House, 2009).
Learn more about Katha Pollitt at The Nation.