Good will


Definition of WILLINGNESS [ from Merriam Webster]

Cheerful readiness to do something [ plus ditto to feel or be something]

Thinking about the significance of “willingness” , it comes to my mind that if we are asked to do something pleasurable we will not need urging.We will easily be willing unless we are masochists are have pressing needs that cannot wait.
So what is the significance of “willingness” when it relates to something unpleasant or painful we must do?
I can imagine one scene where I ask someone to do a small task for me and though they are busy they are “more than willing” knowing my circumstances.But I ask a different person and though they agree there is a grudging quality about their doing what I ask.
Tn the first case we all feel joy when we know someone will go out of their way to help us and in the second we feel uneasy about asking that person and neither side gains much from the transaction.

Now turn inwards and imagine that you wake up feeling in poor spirits and moreover you do not like this.That is, you are unwilling to feel the way you do.
In my experience being unwilling in that way makes the spirits worse. We have secondary anger or depression about our state which can only make it worse.
Now think of the term “acceptance”.We can easily imagine that if we can accept a situation we can deal with it better.So a wife who finds her husband’s hobby is studying maths in the evening is going to have a problem if she believed they would spend every evening chatting together.
The husband too has a problem that he may not have foreseen when he was madly in love.He has to work out how much time he needs alone with his abstractions or whether it is an excuse not to engage with his wife.
The wife who finds her husband genuinely needs to study for long hours or he is unhappy will have to consider whether she can accept this as a way of life or whether she should seek a better partner because nowadays women want to have their needs met too,
If she accepts it and adapts then she may be happy.A problem arises if she keeps up a war with her husband, criticizing and blaming him for his needs.I might say she can’t force him to talk to her as what value does it have when it is not spontaneous?
If people have good will towards each other then they can find a way of living and respecting the other.
If we have good will towards ourselves then we can accept and live with parts of ourself we do not like or parts which cause us suffering yet which cannot be changed and must be lived with.
If we don’t have good will towards ourselves then life is much harder as we attack ourselves with criticism and deprivation of love.
I think willingness or good will is crucially important in human life though no doubt I frequently forget it! Ill will directed anywhere outside or inside harms both parties or splits the self and causes deeper problems.
Of course, it is hard to be willing to suffer painful emotions but what choice do we have? Only to find the best way or at least
“to be willing to be willing”
as I describe it to myself.
Is willingness a virtue or a decision? Or an impossibility for some of us?

A  violin would work if you could play

The villanelle won’t jell,I feel dismay.
I know they’re hell ,but they distill my thoughts
A triolet would work if I could play

I boiled the villanelle  to sell    today
I do believe I’m feeling underwrought
The villanelle won’t jell,I feel dismay

I planned to sell the whole lot on Ebay
But someone gave a hint I never caught
A triolet would work if I could play

I appreciate the values of wet hay
My teacher never mentioned  poems  caught short
The villanelle won’t sell,I can’t  display.

Some will plight  their  troth and others  pray
The teacher saw the writing  she’d not taught
A triolet would work if I could play

I wrote a poem with words I had not sought
Is it vice  to pay when we’ve not  bought?
The villanelle won’t jell,I  say,hurrah
A  violin would work if you could play

I’m hungry, but  for you I’ll always wait

The ready roasted chicken on its plate
The roast potatoes ,kale and podded peas
I’m hungry and I do not want to wait

Now I hear the clicking of the gate
The whisper of the wind among the trees
The ready roasted chicken on its plate

You’re never more than twenty minutes late
The trains are crowded, nowhere one can read.
I’m hungry and I do not want to wait

I remember you were working with no break
For nowadays  we ‘re electric in our greed.
The ready roasted chicken on its plate

So  love is hard in such un-knighted states
We want  acceleration in our speed
I’m angry  for there is no real debate


The country’s growing nothing now  but weeds
The Education sector is diseased.
The  cold ,gold roasted chicken on its plate
I’m hungry, but  for you I’ll always wait


The social function of poetry


“I hope this does not sound like an exercise in ambiguities. If so, let me add another: one of poetry’s chief aims is to illumine the walls of mystery, the inscrutable, the unsayable. I think poetry ought to be taught not as an engine of meaning but as an opportunity to learn to live in doubt and uncertainty, as a means of claimingindeterminancy. Our species is deeply defined by its great surges of reason, but I think it high time we return to elemental awe and wonder. Such a position is necessary to our communal health.

I try to teach my students the full magnitude of what can happen during the reading of a poem. The readerly self, if the music and strategies of the poem are a success, fades away to assume the speaker’s identity, or the poem’s psychic position. Once a reader has fully internalized the poem’s machinations, she collects a chorus within her and is transformed. This ritual generates empathy and widens our humanity. These might seem like grand dreams, but it is just such a belief in the power of poetry that spurs my pen to action, whether I am getting paid or not. “