"the great interests of man: air and light, the joy of
having a body, the voluptuousness of looking."
I always credited these lines to Wallace Stevens, but when I looked them up to check my memory, I realized that Stevens is actually quoting Mario Rossi in the epigraph to the poem, Evening Without Angels.
Now that I'm looking at the poem, how can I resist quoting the last stanza?
. . . Evening, when the measure skips a beat
And then another, one by one, and all
To a seething minor swiftly modulate.
Bare night is best. Bare earth is best. Bare, bare,
Except for our own houses, huddled low
Beneath the arches and their spangled air,
Beneath the rhapsodies of fire and fire,
Where the voice that is in us makes a true response,
Where the voice that is great within us rises up,
As we stand gazing at the rounded moon.
* Interested in starting your own happiness project? If you’d like to take a look at my personal Resolutions Chart, for inspiration, just email me at grubin, then the “at” sign, then gretchenrubin dot com. (Sorry about writing it in that roundabout way; I’m trying to thwart spammers.) Just write “Resolutions Chart” in the subject line.