These things I wish you for our friendship’s sake – A sunburnt thatch, a door to face the sun At westering, the noise of homing rooks; A kind, old lazy chair, a courtly cat To rub against your knees; Shelves of well-chosen books; I wish you these.
I wish you friends whose wisdom makes them kind, Well-leisured friends to share your evening’s peace, Friends who can season knowledge with a laugh; A hedge of lavender, a patch of thyme, With sage and marjoram and rosemary, A damask rosebush and a hive of bees, And cabbages that hold the morning dew, A blackbird in the orchard boughs – all these And – God bless you.
Children, no matter whose, to watch for you With flower faces at your garden gate, And one to watch the clock with eager eyes, Saying: “He’s late – he’s late.”
I thought of posting a pair of poems - this and another, titled "Good Bones" by Maggie Smith. But in the end, I decided on just this - partly because this poem has been so forgotten - it was by chance that I came across it in a comment thread.
What I would hope - for myself, for my children, my husband, anyone - all of these. Particularly, I would hope for kind friends because I understand now that kindness is everything.