Our Lives Have Started For Real

I re-read The Life of a Day by Tom Hennen – https://www.doe.mass.edu/mcas/pdf/2013/259294.pdf – and, after some meandering that took me back to this post from January 28, 2018.


From the poem The Life of a Day by Tom Hennen:

“We examine each day before us with barely a glance and say, no, this isn’t the one I’ve been looking for, and wait in a bored sort of way for the next, when, we are convinced, our lives will start for real.”

I read this and, once I got past the guilt of conviction, a couple of things came to mind. 

A Don Williams song: “I got high hopes that tomorrow, is gonna be better than today.  It don’t look like its comin’, I know, buy why not believe it anyway.”

And Matthew 6:34: “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”

It is so easy to reject or set aside today in hopes of a better tomorrow, especially once you get to, say, 10:00 a.m.  It is easy at that point (sometimes earlier) to tell myself “no, this isn’t the one I’ve been looking for.”  But of course, today is the hand dealt today, and who knows what tomorrow’s hand will be, if it is dealt at all.  So, how do I play this hand?


Funny how four years and a pandemic allow you to read something through different lenses.  Here, I am now wondering why I left off the portion of Hennen’s poem immediately below the portion quoted above:

“Meanwhile, this day is going by perfectly well-adjusted as some days are, with the right amounts of sunlight and shade, and a light breeze scented with a perfume made from the mixture of fallen apples, corn stubble, dry oak leaves, and the faint odor of last night’s meandering skunk.”

It is, in the midst of it, hard to imagine that any day in the last two years “is going by perfectly well-adjusted….”  And while I, like Don Williams, “have high hopes that tomorrow is gonna be better than today,” today is here, now. And I am still wondering, how do I play this hand.

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