“If There Be Sorrow…”

I’m sharing a poem today that I’ve loved most of my life. It is one of the first poems I scribbled into my inspiration notebook many moons ago. The poem, “If There Be Sorrow,” was written by Mari Evans (1923-2017), a writer-activist and major figure of the Black Arts Movement of the 1960’s and 1970’s.

I was and am drawn to the wisdom of the short verse, of living a life without regret.

If There Be Sorrow
Mari Evans

If there be sorrow
let it be
for things undone . . .
undreamed
unrealized
unattained
to these add one;
Love withheld . . .
. . . restrained


About the image: This is another photo card from the set  designed by my photographer/art journalist friend Diane W (midteacher on swap-bot). I shared a couple earlier this month with William Wordsworth’s “A Psalm of Life,” a poem with a message similar to Evans’.

10 thoughts on ““If There Be Sorrow…”

  1. Ellen Hawley says:

    Chandra, you are the only person I’ve run into who knows Mari Evans’ poetry–although I admit I don’t know much of it. I ran into a poem of hers in the 70s, in an anthology of women’s poetry, and I’m trying to reassemble the title. Something like “To Mother and [insert man’s name].” It was simple, direct, powerful–the kind of poem that had nothing extra, nothing wasted, and could knock you off your chair.

    I admit, I haven’t gone looking for people who know her work and I don’t spend a lot of time discussing poets with people I know. But when I first saw it I did pass it around a bit and I wondered, “Why isn’t this woman better known?”

    I mean, in addition to the obvious reasons.

    Liked by 1 person

Talk to me...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.