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Excerpt from As I Walked Out One Evening by W.H. Auden

'O look, look in the mirror,
   O look in your distress:
Life remains a blessing
   Although you cannot bless.

'O stand, stand at the window
   As the tears scald and start;
You shall love your crooked neighbour
   With your crooked heart.'

W.H. Auden was one of the first poets I ever “got”.   Lines from his poems run through my mind from time to time.  Lately I have been thinking about what a challenge it can be to love others…Love as a concrete action rather than an abstract feeling.  And I fail, miserably, every day.  I am judgmental, impatient, easily irritated, and intolerant.  And that is with my friends.

These lines came to me mysteriously last night as I was watching Son Volt perform at the WOW Hall.  I closed my eyes as they were performing Strength and Doubt and disappeared for just a moment.  Love Your Crooked Neighbor With Your Crooked Heart drifted through my mind.  It was a moment of unexpected transcendence.

Listen to: Strength and Doubt

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