The only people I ever heard talk about my Lady Poverty
were rich people, or people who imagined themselves rich.
Saint Francis himself was a rich and spoiled young man.

Being born amoung the working people
I know povery is a hard old hag,
and a monster, when you're pinched for actual necessities.
And whoever says she isn't, is a liar.

I don't want to be poor, it means I am pinched.
But neither do I want to be rich.
When I look at this pine-tree near the sea,
that grows out of rock, and it plumes forth, plumes forth,
I see it has a natural abundance.

With its roots it has a grand grip on its daily bread,
and its plumes look like green cup held up to the sun and air
and full of wine.

I want to be like that, to have a natural abundance
and plume forth, and be splendid.


I am worn out
with the effort of trying to love people
and not succeeding.

Now I've made up my mind
I love nobody, I'm going to love nobody,
I'm not going to tell any lies about it
and it's final.

If there's any man here, or a woman
whom I can really like,
that's quite enough for me.

And if by a miracle a woman had happened to come along
who warmed the cockles of my heart
I'd rejoice over the woman and the warmed cockles of my heart
so long as it didn't all fizzle out in talk.


Why don't people leave off being lovable
or thinking they are lovable, or wanting to be lovable,
and be a bit elemental instead?

Since man is made up of the elements
fire, and rain, and air, and live loam
and none of these is lovable
but elemental,
man is lop-sided on the side of the angels.

I wish men would get back to their balance among the elements
and be a bit more fiery, as incapable of telling lies
as fire is.
I wish they'd be true to their own variation, as water is,
which goes through all the stages of steam and stream and ice
without losing its head.

I am sick of lovable people,
somehow they are a lie.

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