Monday, November 15, 2010

"Wrestling as if with God's knuckles"

Just found this quote from poet Walt Whitman, who is buried across the river from Philly in Camden. Once a prosperous town and port, home of Campbell's soups and RCA Victor, Camden is now is one of the poorest towns in the U.S.

Times were hard then, in 1847, and it's full circle now.

Walt dreamed that he spent his last dime on a meal, and suddenly found a starved face at his side, not uttering a word.*  He writes, "What is this then that balances itself upon my lips and wrestles as with the knuckles of God for every bite I put between them, and if my belly is victor...follows the innocent food down my throat and turns it to fire and lead within me?

He continues: "And what is it but my soul that hisses lie an angry snake, Fool! will you stuff your greed and starve me?"

 I guess that means we could do with some soul stuffing.....especially these difficult days.

*From The Gift.  Creativity and the Artist in the Modern World.