Miracle Fair (Wisława Szymborska)

September 21, 2009

The commonplace miracle:
that so many common miracles take place.

The usual miracle:
invisible dogs barking
in the dead of night.

One of many miracles:
a small and airy cloud
is able to upstage the massive moon.

Several miracles in one:
an alder is reflected it the water
and is reversed from left to right
and grows from crown to root
and never hits bottom
though the water isn’t deep.

A run-of-the-mill miracle:
winds mild to moderate
turning gusty in storms.

A miracle in the first place:
cows wills be cows.

Next but not least:
just this cherry orchard
from just this cherry pit.

A miracle minus top hat and tails:
fluttering white doves.

A miracle (what else can you call it):
the sun rose today at three fourteen a.m.
and will set tonight at one past eight.

A miracle that’s lost on us:
the hand actually has fewer than six fingers
but still it’s got more than four.

A miracle, just take a look around:
the inescapable earth.

An extra miracle, extra and ordinary:
the unthinkable
can be thought.

*

“Even bullshit is fertilizer,” a friend once told me. “Something good in a green and flowering world will come of it,” he said. And Chesterton reminds us that in the very shape of things there is more than green growth. There is the finality of the flower. In this “world of crowns” even small airy clouds upstage massive moons. Miracle fair. Take your pick. They wait beyond every opened door. They’re fixed within the frame of every morning mirror.

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