Habit - A Jane Hirshfield poem singing in the company of the sweet singers!
I was reminded of this poem by Jane Hirshfield as I wrote "Monochrome" just minutes ago. While we make a lot of choices, habits often choose us. We don't know where we picked them from. This poem is really about the universal guru. The teacher who is teaching us all the time. Making habits all the time. To form good habits, we need good company. Sing in the company of the sweet singers, shiv.
- Jane Hirshfield
The morning potion's teaspoon of sweetness stirred always for seven circlings—no fewer, no more— into the cracked blue cup.
Touching the pocket for wallet, for keys, before closing the door.
How did we come to believe these small rituals' promise, that we are today the selves we yesterday knew, tomorrow will be?
How intimate and unthinking, the way the toothbrush is shaken dry after use, the part we wash first in the bath.
Which habits we learned from others and which are ours alone we may never know. Unbearable to acknowledge how much they are themselves our fated life.
Open the traveling suitcase—
There the beloved red sweater, bright tangle of necklace, earrings of amber. Each confirming: I chose these, I.
But habit is different: it chooses. And we, its good horse, opening our mouths at even the sight of the bit.