‘When Giving Is All We Have’

Tiffany cropped 9681_2_face0A cascade of gifts has, lately, refreshed me. The most generous of gestures from distant and nearby sources have rushed my heart and whirled inspiration, hinting the end of an exorbitantly long parched season.

I’ll likely share more about these experiences over the coming weeks, but here’s a splash of delight from just yesterday. My friend Manoj passed along something a friend shared with him—a poem! A good poem never ceases giving and, veritably, can replenish at a speed few things do. By Alberto Rios, Arizona’s first ever Poet Laureate, this one ripples and flows to my spring.


When Giving Is All We Have


One river gives
Its journey to the next.

We give because someone gave to us.
We give because nobody gave to us.

We give because giving has changed us.
We give because giving could have changed us.

We have been better for it,
We have been wounded by it—

Giving has many faces: It is loud and quiet,
Big, though small, diamond in wood-nails.

Its story is old, the plot worn and the pages too,
But we read this book, anyway, over and again:

Giving is, first and every time, hand to hand,
Mine to yours, yours to mine.

You gave me blue and I gave you yellow.
Together we are simple green. You gave me

What you did not have, and I gave you
What I had to give—together, we made

Something greater from the difference.

Alberto Ríos

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