Some people presume to be hopeful
when there is no evidence for hope,
to be happy when there is no cause.
Let me say now, I’m with them.
In deep darkness on a cold twig
in a dangerous world, one first
little fluff lets out a peep, a warble,
a song—and in a little while, behold:
the first glimmer comes, then a glow
filters through the misty trees,
then the bold sun rises, then
everyone starts bustling about.
And that first crazy optimist, can we
forgive her for thinking, dawn by dawn,
“Hey, I made that happen!
And oh, life is so fine.”
I like to think I’m one of those people Stafford talks about, who presumes to be hopeful without evidence, to be happy when there is no cause. Still, there are days when my hope-energy wanes, and a poem like this can rejuvenate me, allowing me to rejoin the tribe, even for that moment.
In a place of deep darkness in a dangerous world, there is one first / little fluff breaking the silence with a peep, a warble, / a song and I breathe a sigh of recognition and relief. Then comes a glimmer, a glow before the bold sun rises. I’m not always up that early, but it is a unique time of day before we all start to bustle about, a time to reflect on the beauty all around us.
Someone has to be the first to announce the dawn before they all join in, and Stafford playfully imagines her thinking Hey, I made that happen! I brought up the sun! and oh, life is so fine. And isn’t it so, that just those first notes of birdsong can give us even a moment of joy, of hopefulness. Listen tomorrow morning and perhaps you’ll hear a fluff of happiness, even when there is no cause.