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Saturday, July 23, 2016

Happy life, happy poetry

“I always tell students that writing a poem and publishing it are two quite separate things, and you should write what you have to write, and if you're afraid it's going to upset someone, don't publish it.”  Wendy Cope

A contemporary English poet, Cope (who turned 71 this week) has attracted a popular following with her lighthearted, often comical poetry, as well as achieving literary credibility by winning a number of awards and making an award shortlist almost annually over the last two decades. 

Named an Officer of the British Empire (entitling her to be addressed as Dame Wendy) in 2010, she is far from expressing herself as royalty when writing her poems.  In fact, she has been lauded for her keen eye for the everyday, mundane aspects of English life, especially the desires, frustrations, hopes, confusions and emotions in intimate relationships.                   
  She also is a great writer for kids, and empathizes with their hopes, dreams and frustrations. 

For Saturday’s Poem, here’s just one of the dozens and dozens of clever Wendy Cope poems that I’ve loved reading over the years. And, I hope you'll look for her, too.   Enjoy, and happy weekend!

The Orange

At lunchtime I brought a huge orange –
The size of it made us all laugh.
I peeled it and shared it with Robert and Dave –
They got quarters, and I had a half.

That orange, it made me so happy,
As ordinary things often do
Just lately.  The shopping.  A walk in the park.
This is peace and contentment.  It’s new.

The rest of the day was quite easy,
I did all the things on my list
And enjoyed them, and had some time over.
I love you.  I’m glad I exist.

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