Monday, January 4, 2010

I Was Mean to You Today by Pat Schneider

I Was Mean to You Today
by Pat Schneider

Things were difficult
and I was impatient.
You were trying to explain
why I must reorganize the files
on my computer, why
they all have to have project numbers,
why I can't put them
where they've always been,
what the tax consultant said,
what you need for your report
to the Board of Directors,
and it boiled down to my files
have to be re-filed, and they
have to have titles with no more
than twelve letters to leave room
for project numbers,
and I said, Well, dammit.
And you said, Don't talk like that.

You sounded pained
and I was mean to you.
I was bored and tired
and mad, and you were
trying hard. Later,
I went out in the rain.
I went to the mall
and bought us both really
expensive pillows. Down
pillows with 100 per cent
cotton covers, 400 thread count.
I have lusted after them for years,
ever since Mama told me
that she asked Grandma,
who was 86 and dying,
"If you could have anything
in the world, what would it be?"
and Grandma answered,
"A down pillow" and Mama
didn't have enough money.
I bought two down pillows for us all,
to say I'm sorry.

"I Was Mean to You Today" by Pat Schneider, from The Patience of Ordinary Things. © Amherst Writers & Artists Press, 2003.



Serena said...

Oh, I like that. A lot.

Kelly said...

Me, too! (really cute picture, also!)

Rikkij said...

Marion- is there anything in the world a down pillow can't make better? Yeah, I like the pic, also ~rick

Karen said...

I read this yesterday and came back today to find the same deep feeling in this deceptively simple poem. I really like it.

Marion said...

Thanks, you guys. I heard this poem on NPR one day and decided to post it. I couldn't find the book it came from...Sadly, I think it's out of print. I appreciate you all! Love & Blessings!

Renee said...

If anyone is ever mean to you please send them to a Canadian with a sledgehammer.


Anonymous said...

Oh, that was stunning.

Marion said...

Oh, Renee, you just gave me my first laugh of the day! I love you, my strong and fearless Canadian pal. Don't worry, I have Ray tied up and bound with duct tape. Ha! Just kidding. He's snoring on the couch in the den, bless his heart. I'll let you know if anyone is mean to me, though. Tee-Hee. Love & Blessings!

Meredith, thanks for stopping by. I'm glad you enjoyed the poem. Blessings!!

Marion said...

Oh! I love this poem...can anything be better in the way of an apology than two very special down pillows? Thank you so much for posting it...if I am ever in need of words for an apology, I will hand this poem over instead! Blessings to you this very fine day!

Phoenix said...

I love this poem! I've never heard it before so I'm so grateful you shared it - isn't it wonderful when poems turn our least graceful and beautiful moments into something full of grace and love?

Blessings to you, as always, Marion - I hope you had a lovely New Year's Eve and that you have an inspired 2010.

Marion said...

Marion, so glad you enjoyed the poem. I know I couldn't live without my down pillows. I just love their cushy softness. Thanks for stopping by. Blessings!

Phoenix, I'm so glad you enjoyed the poem. I just loved it when I heard it on NPR. Yes, those moments are beautiful and precious. Blessings back to you, Phoenix.