tangled beauty

Let us be glad for tangled things--
   For soiled fingers raking thick-stemmed grass;
     For matted fur on long, warm ears;
Or child's hair idly twisted in rings.
   A thatch of ganglia fires in the brain's wet mass:
     A thought--electric--splits, connects, adheres.

All things rooted, snarled, or tensed,
   Whatever needs some mesh to form its mass,
With loops, forks; twists, knots; ends, tears.
   Let's give thanks for things that are soft and dense. 

See also: for Gerard Manley Hopkins; and Pied Beauty, illustrated.

About Peter

Associate Dean for Research and the Lincoln Filene Professor of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Tufts University's Tisch College of Civic Life. Concerned about civic education, civic engagement, and democratic reform in the United States and elsewhere.
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