POETS Day! Hilaire Belloc

[This entry is cross posted at ordinary-times.com]

Happy POETS Day! Welcome one and all to the gateway. On the other side? Henry Fords greatest invention: The Weekend. This morning you got up as you always do and despite yourself, fell into wakefulness. After trying to tame your hair and doing whatever else is your habit to make yourself presentable you found yourself at the kitchen table with a cup of coffee in your hand and burning desire not to look up at the clock because you knew what it would say. The sprint out the door left you with your hat on backwards as your arms tried to flap themselves into a coat and two blocks later, arms still flapping, you just avoided getting pinched by the bus doors and off you went. At work you wandered in and wandered out – a cigarette could help to clear your mind and make you more productive – and wandered back in and it began. Somebody from accounting started blathering on about a dinner receipt from last month and without preamble you found yourself in the cyclical nightmare and there’s nothing fair about that. No guidance counselor in high school used the word drudgery. Fie on their houses. You didn’t agree to this. Just two days a week to yourself? No. Take it back. Even if it’s just a symbolic few hours on a Friday afternoon. Take it back. End this life’s work aspirational garbage and see it as what it is: one of the thousands of potholes on the road to your happiness. Go see a show, grab a beer, meet some friends for a game, or just wander aimlessly around the park. It’s not the company’s time. It’s yours. Piss Off Early, Tomorrow’s Saturday. Do it quickly or you might forget you don’t always have to live by the rules.


This week’s featured poet is Hilaire Belloc. I wonder what he would call himself. He certainly was a poet but he was also a British MP, lecturer, debater, and apologist. As to the breadth of his non-poetic writings, allpoetry.com notes,

“His first book was a small volume of verse, published in 1896, and from then on a torrent of books, pamphlets, letters etc. poured from his pen. It astonishes, not only in its bulk but in its diversity; French and British history, military strategy, satire, comic and serious verse, literary criticism, topography and travel, translations, religious, social and political commentary, long-running controversies with such opponents as H.G. wells and Dr. G.G. Coulton, and hundreds of essays, fill over one hundred and fifty volumes. It is little wonder that A.P. Herbert described him as ‘the man who wrote a library’.”

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