Friday poem: 'There are many things I ought to do'

19 September 2014

There's a 'graceful sufficiency' to this poem. At very first glance it seems to be concerned primarily with objects – plants, notebooks, stamps, a window sill – but on second looking, these objects might relate to a way of thinking, of being. The language of the poem seems to luxuriate in itself (take the gorgeous precision of 'velvet pointillism') while also pointing to a particular way of being in the world.

Have a great weekend,
Sarah, Picador poetry editor

P.S. All our Friday poems are on picador.com.

The Things We Do

There are many things I ought to do
and I’d do them if it wasn’t for Le Pevroque,
the tiny cinema where stark tales of sex and death
beguiled me on so many rainy afternoons
on the velvet pointillism of the screen.
I have tried to have a system, and I do have one or two;
on the cover of this notebook, I have written
Only Poetry. I have stamps. I have a plan
for a display of streptocarpus on your window sill.
Each day their graceful sufficiency will underline
the things we do, the catalogue of our intentions.

The Best Man That Ever Was 'The Things We Do' was first published in Annie Freud's collection The Best Man That Ever Was. Annie was recently named as one of twenty Next Generation Poets by the Poetry Book Society.

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