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Judith Viorst

(February 2, 1931)

The Pleasures of Ordinary Life


I've had my share of necessary losses,
Of dreams I know no longer can come true.
I'm done now with the whys and the becauses.
It's time to make things good, not just make do.
It's time to stop complaining and pursue
The pleasures of an ordinary life.

I used to rail against my compromises.
I yearned for the wild music, the swift race.
But happiness arrived in new disguises:
Sun lighting a child's hair. A friend's embrace.
Slow dancing in a safe and quiet place.
The pleasures of an ordinary life.

I'll have no trumpets, triumphs, trails of glory.
It seems the woman I've turned out to be
Is not the heroine of some grand story.
But I have learned to find the poetry
In what my hands can touch, my eyes can see.
The pleasures of an ordinary life.

Young fantasies of magic and of mystery
Are over. But they really can't compete
With all we've built together: A long history.
Connections that help render us complete.
Ties that hold and heal us. And the sweet,
Sweet pleasures of an ordinary life.

Submitted: Friday, January 03, 2003

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Read poems about / on: history, poetry, magic, happiness, music, woman, together, child, friend, hair, life, time, sun, children, dance, dream, women

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  • Rookie Virginia Prickett (7/17/2009 7:17:00 PM)

    Many years ago I copied this poem into my journal because it sounded so real to my experience. Three months ago my husband of nearly sixty years died. And once again these words echo truth in my heart:

    'Young fantasies of magic and of mystery
    Are over. But they really can't compete
    With all we've built together: A long history.
    Connections that help render us complete.
    Ties that hold and heal us. And the sweet,
    Sweet pleasures of an ordinary life. '

    Thank you, Mrs. Viorst (Report) Reply

Read all 1 comments »

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