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This is the blog of Ian Rosales Casocot. Filipino writer. Sometime academic. Former backpacker. Twink bait. Hamster lover.


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Tuesday, April 04, 2006

entry arrow12:01 AM | Elizabeth Bishop

This is a post for Naya, my cheshire cat, because she's happy.



One Art

The art of losing isn't hard to master;
so many things seem filled with the intent
to be lost that their loss is no disaster.

Lose something every day. Accept the fluster
of lost door keys, the hour badly spent.
The art of losing isn't hard to master.

Then practice losing farther, losing faster:
places, and names, and where it was you meant
to travel. None of these will bring disaster.

I lost my mother's watch. And look! my last, or
next-to-last, of three loved houses went.
The art of losing isn't hard to master.

I lost two cities, lovely ones. And, vaster,
some realms I owned, two rivers, a continent.
I miss them, but it wasn't a disaster.

-- Even losing you (the joking voice, a gesture
I love) I shan't have lied. It's evident
the art of losing's not too hard to master
though it may look like (Write it!) like disaster.


This is one of my favorite poems, from one of my favorite poets. Here's a distillation of the poem. Here's something on the controversial book on Bishop's unpublished work and drafts by The New Yorker's Alice Quinn. Here's David Orr's The New York Times review of that book.

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