“Perhaps you’ll tire of me,” muses
my love, although she’s like a great city
to me, or a park that finds new
ways to wear each flounce of light
and investiture of weather.
Soil doesn’t tire of rain, I think,

but I know what she fears: plans warp,
planes explode, topsoil gets peeled away
by floods. And worse than what we can’t
control is what we could; those drab
scuttled marriages we shed so
gratefully may auger we’re on our owns

for good reason. “Hi, honey,” chirps Dread
when I come through the door; “you’re home.”
Experience is a great teacher
of the value of experience,
its claustrophobic prudence,
its gloomy name-the-disasters-

in-advance charisma. Listen,
my wary one, it’s far too late
to unlove each other. Instead let’s cook
something elaborate and not
invite anyone to share it but eat it
all up very very slowly.

Analysis, meaning and summary of William Matthews's poem Misgivings

2 Comments

  1. Linda Dooling says:

    Matthews captures perfectly how destructive our wish for safety can be, how we must embrace one another in the face of a dangerously indifferent universe … and do so with celebration & courage.

  2. Jerry Boyke says:

    He nudged our thinking in a different direction. And thanks too to Garrison.

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