Poem of the Week, by ee cummings

Abel Pann, breathing life into AdamWhen I was a kid I used to read ee cummings’ poems not so much for the words but for the way he put them down on the page, all shoved up against each other, parentheses around some, weird punctuation, missing spaces, and the complete lack of upper case letters, down to the way he spelled his own name. Why why why why does he do it that way, I used to wonder. The strangeness and unconventionality was so fascinating. He was a Famous Person so I knew that all these choices must be intentional, but why why why?

If at first I didn’t care about the poems themselves, now I love them. Mr. Cummings is one of my most beloved poets, in fact. A small white used paperback copy of his 50 Poems that I found at a garage sale sits on a shelf in the living room; this poem felt right for today.

in spite of everything
– e.e. cummings

in spite of everything
which breathes and moves, since Doom
(with white longest hands
neatening each crease)
will smooth entirely our minds

– before leaving my room
i turn, and (stooping
through the morning) kiss
this pillow, dear
where our heads lived and were.


For more about ee cummings, please click here.