Oddly enough, I have been trying to think of a way to incorporate one of my favourite poems into the Bloghop, so this works out very nicely indeed!
The poem in question is The World is a Beautiful Place, by Lawrence Ferlinghetti. Anyone familiar with the Beat Poets of 1960s will be aware of him, but this is a rather wonderful poem which doesn't often get the attention that I would give it, if I were in charge of things like that.
Before you click through to read the poem, you may or may not like to know a little about him. His biography serves to let us know that he has an incredibly unusual background.
I know that biographies aren't supposed to matter (Death of the Author and all that), but in knowing about it enhanced my reading of this particular poem, more than any others.
His father died before he was born, and his mother committed to an asylum shortly after his birth. He was then taken in by an aunt and spent some time in an orphanage (while his aunt saught employment). Then strangely, the aunt left while Ferlinghetti was still a child.
For a young life characterised by absence, this particular poem (as well as others, but less notably) throws into relief Ferlinghetti's ability not to dwell on past experience, but to enjoy the present.
Ferlinghetti's not a dweller - he prefers instead to dip back into the past to explore what he describes as Pictures from a Gone World (the name of his 1955 collection of poems).
Please click through and read the poem - as it's still in copyright, I can't publish it here. I can however, offer a little taster (click title for whole thing):
The World is a Beautiful Place
The world is a beautiful place
to be born into
if you don't mind happiness
not always being
so very much fun
if you don't mind a touch of hell
now and then
just when everything is fine
because even in heaven
they don't sing
all the time
Go on, read on. It's WONDERFUL.
In terms of finding your groove, Ferlinghetti is the very master of it. A spiritual #groovingmum, I'm certain.
What do you make of his background? Did you read the poem? What did you think?