Published on Academy of American Poets (https://poets.org)


The Things

When I walk in my house I see pictures,
bought long ago, framed and hanging
—de Kooning, Arp, Laurencin, Henry Moore—
that I've cherished and stared at for years,
yet my eyes keep returning to the masters 
of the trivial—a white stone perfectly round, 
tiny lead models of baseball players, a cowbell, 
a broken great-grandmother's rocker,
a dead dog's toy—valueless, unforgettable 
detritus that my children will throw away
as I did my mother's souvenirs of trips 
with my dead father, Kodaks of kittens, 
and bundles of cards from her mother Kate.

Credit


"The Things" from The Back Chamber by Donald Hall. Copyright © 2011 by Donald Hall. Used by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.

Author


Donald Hall

The author of many collections of poetry, criticism, and children's literature, Donald Hall served as Poet Laureate of New Hampshire from 1984 to 1989. In the June 2006, Hall was appointed the Library of Congress's fourteenth Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry.

Date Published: 2011-01-01

Source URL: https://poets.org/poem/things