Poem: The Things by Donald Hall

The Things by Donald Hall.

When I walk in my house I see pictures,
bought long ago, framed and hanging
de Kooning, Arp, Laurencin, Henry Moore
that I’ve cherished and stared at for years,
yet my eyes keep returning to the masters
of the trivial — a white stone perfectly round,
tiny lead models of baseball players, a cowbell,
a broken great-grandmother’s rocker,
a dead dog’s toy — valueless, unforgettable
detritus that my children will throw away
as I did my mother’s souvenirs of trips
with my dead father. Kodaks of kittens,
and bundles of cards from her mother Kate.

“The Things” by Donald Hall, from The Back Chamber. © Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2011.

Donald Hall
photo: Hugh Chatfield

Donald Hall was born in New Haven, Connecticut, in 1928

Billy Collins said of his poetry: “He writes with a kind of simplicity that succeeds in engaging the reader in the first few lines

Donald Hall has published numerous books on poetry as well as books on baseball, the sculptor Henry Moore, the poet Marianne Moore, several childrens books, and autobiographical works, such as The Best Day The Worst Day: Life with Jane Kenyon (2005).

His many honors include two Guggenheim fellowships, the Poetry Society of America’s Robert Frost Silver medal, a Lifetime Achievement award from the New Hampshire Writers and Publisher Project, and the Ruth Lilly Prize for poetry.

About dearrosie

We think we need so much, when all we really need is time to breathe. Come walk with me, put one foot in front of the other, and get to know yourself. Please click the link to my blog - below - and leave me a comment. I love visitors.
This entry was posted in Poetry and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Poem: The Things by Donald Hall

  1. Priya says:

    My eyes are stuck at “a white stone perfectly round” and “Kodaks of kittens” Such a pretty picture. Sometimes the simplest of things can find a permanent etching in your mind. Beautiful.

  2. Cindy says:

    Absolutely lovely!

  3. souldipper says:

    Such deep truth so well presented..

  4. magsx2 says:

    A beautiful poem, and so true in many ways.

    • dearrosie says:

      After reading the poem I walked around my house and looked at the pictures on the walls and wondered what my kids would do with all the stuff Mr F and I have collected.

I'd be delighted if you left me a comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s