A Serious Frivolity by Bernadette Miller

Savoring the substance
of existence
is a serious
frivolity.
Someone must do it.

Someone must love
luminous hours when leaves
marry light and refuse
to stop
shining.

Someone must speak
the sweetness
of lilacs
before it is lost
beneath smog.

Someone must bask
in the beauty of blessing
because the news knows only
brokenness.

When you give yourself
to a particular place
the power
and peace
of that place
give themselves
through you.

So savoring the substance
of existence
is a serious frivolity.
Someone must do it.

Will that someone
be you?


I confess, I love a poem that asks a question, especially when my answer is a strong yes!

I love the contradiction of seriousness and frivolity – what I hear the poet saying is that savouring (as we must) this precious existence is both significant and consequential, and without serious purpose. Therefore, someone, someone must do this impossible thing.

We must love the radiant light shining on the leaves, the sweet, transient smell of lilacs, the beauty of blessing because, and this is the reason: the news knows only / brokenness. Every day we are given opportunities to see this truth in the face of all the brokenness.

You are both the giver and the receiver: when you give yourself wholly to wherever you are, you receive the power and peace that is transmitted to you, through you.

Therefore, we must fully taste, in all senses of the word, this seriously frivolously amazing life. So what do you say,  Will that someone be you?  I’m willing to bet the answer is Yes!

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