Finding Value

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Finding Value

I find value in every form of life—snow, strawberries, a fly.
I find value in the mineral kingdom and the congress of stars.
I find value in wine while a meal lasts, an involuntary smile,
the fatigue that comes from not holding back,
and an old couple in love.
I find value in what tomorrow will be worth nothing,
and what today is still worth little.
I find value in every sort of wound.
I find value in conserving water, mending a pair of shoes,
holding your tongue, running toward a scream, asking before sitting down,
and feeling grateful without recalling why.
I find value inside a room knowing where north is,
and the name of the wind drying the laundry.
I find value in the rover’s travel, the nun’s retreat,
and the convict’s patience, whatever the crime.
I find value in using the verb “to love”
and in the presumption that a creator exists.
Many of these values I have not known.

Erri De Luca

Translated by Jim Hicks

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