MayBE 2023: Day thirty-one.


by W.H. Auden

Looking up at the stars, I know quite well

That, for all they care, I can go to hell,

But on earth indifference is the least

We have to dread from man or beast.

How should we like it were stars to burn

With a passion for us we could not return?

If equal affection cannot be,

Let the more loving one be me.

Admirer as I think I am

Of stars that do not give a damn,

I cannot, now I see them, say

I missed one terribly all day.

Were all stars to disappear or die,

I should learn to look at an empty sky

And feel its total dark sublime,

Though this might take me a little time.

When I read my last MayBE post in 2019, it made me a little sad as I still hear young people say, “Why bother?” Why bother learning? Why bother caring? Why bother wondering or getting curious? Why bother striving?

Four years later, I still don’t understand the question. Perhaps one of our greatest parenting achievements is that our kids never think to ask this question. They are enthusiastic about life and opportunities to learn. It’s time for the world to guide them.

I do encounter many other young people who still marvel at the world, who create and make magnificent things with the most brilliant ideas. This gives me hope. I loved contemplating possibility every day this month. This sense of optimism made me appreciate my world, our world.


  • What inspired you this month?
    • Copy the poem above.
    • What did you create or imagine?
    • Make a list of possibility. (Have you imagined six things before breakfast?)
    • Draw or paint.






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