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Featured Poem: Mending by Hazel Hall

Written by Lisa Spurgin, 5th January 2016

Happy New Year from The Reader Online - we hope that all of our readers had an enjoyable and restful festive season and that you're settling into the new start, wherever you may find yourself.

Though we approach each year with a sense of the undiscovered, it's surprising just how much we hold onto traditions to see in the year ahead. Old habits are as much on our minds as new beginnings, not to mention that January is a good time to clear out clutter - a process which can lead us to contemplate what we need to hold onto as well as the changes we can make. It's with this slightly peculiar combination that we ponder this poem by American poet Hazel Hall, and how the New Year is not so much a chance for a complete overhaul but perhaps to 'mend' our neglected intentions - maybe even get back to the sewing project or book you haven't visited in a while? A good time to catch hold of the 'ravelling threads' before they unravel beyond recognition.


Here are old things:
Fraying edges,
Ravelling threads;
And here are scraps of new goods,
Needles and thread,
An expectant thimble,
A pair of silver-toothed scissors.
Thimble on a finger,
New thread through an eye;
Needle, do not linger,
Hurry as you ply.
If you ever would be through
Hurry, scurry, fly!
Here are patches,
Felled edges,
Darned threads,
Strengthening old utility,
Pending the coming of the new.
Yes, I have been mending …
But also,
I have been enacting
A little travesty on life.

Hazel Hall

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