1. Subscribermdhall
    Mr Palomar
    A box
    25 Sep '06
    10 Oct '07 16:52
    It must be troubling for the god who loves you
    To ponder how much happier you'd be today
    Had you been able to glimpse your many futures.
    It must be painful for him to watch you on Friday evenings
    Driving home from the office, content with your week—
    Three fine houses sold to deserving families—
    Knowing as he does exactly what would have happened
    Had you gone to your second choice for college,
    Knowing the roommate you'd have been allotted
    Whose ardent opinions on painting and music
    Would have kindled in you a lifelong passion.
    A life thirty points above the life you're living
    On any scale of satisfaction. And every point
    A thorn in the side of the god who loves you.
    You don't want that, a large-souled man like you
    Who tries to withhold from your wife the day's disappointments
    So she can save her empathy for the children.
    And would you want this god to compare your wife
    With the woman you were destined to meet on the other campus?
    It hurts you to think of him ranking the conversation
    You'd have enjoyed over there higher in insight
    Than the conversation you're used to.
    And think how this loving god would feel
    Knowing that the man next in line for your wife
    Would have pleased her more than you ever will
    Even on your best days, when you really try.
    Can you sleep at night believing a god like that
    Is pacing his cloudy bedroom, harassed by alternatives
    You're spared by ignorance? The difference between what is
    And what could have been will remain alive for him
    Even after you cease existing, after you catch a chill
    Running out in the snow for the morning paper,
    Losing eleven years that the god who loves you
    Will feel compelled to imagine scene by scene
    Unless you come to the rescue by imagining him
    No wiser than you are, no god at all, only a friend
    No closer than the actual friend you made at college,
    The one you haven't written in months. Sit down tonight
    And write him about the life you can talk about
    With a claim to authority, the life you've witnessed,
    Which for all you know is the life you've chosen.