Thursday, July 31, 2008

Poem of the Day

While in college, someone I know and I saw this poem by Philip Larkin posted on the refrigerator at the then-home of novelist Diane Johnson. I was shocked, believing that Larkin had gotten it wrong...
This be the verse

They fuck you up, your mom and dad
They may not mean to, but they do.
They fill you with the faults they had
And add some extra, just for you.

But they were fucked up in their turn
By fools in old-stylen hats and coats,
Who half the time were soppy-stern
And half at one another's throats.

Man hands on misery to man
It deepens like a coastal shelf.
Get out as early as you can
And don't have any kids yourself.
Now, several decades later, I see that Diane Johnson and Philip Larkin had it right.