Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Richard Schiffman: "Smart Cookie"


(after Wallace Stevens)  

The fortune that you seek is in another cookie,
was my fortune. So I’ll be equally frankthe wisdom
that you covet is in another poem. The life that you desire  
is in a different universe. The cookie you are craving
is in another jar. The jar is buried somewhere in Tennessee.
Don’t even think of searching for it. If you found that jar,
everything would go kerflooey for a thousand miles around.
It is the jar of your fate in an alternate reality. Don’t even
think of living that life. Don’t even think of eating that cookie.
Be a smart cookieeat what’s on your plate, not in some jar
in Tennessee. That’s my wisdom for today, though I know
it’s not what you were looking for.

"Smart Cookie" by Richard Schiffman. First published in Rosebud (date unknown).  

Photography credit: Untitled image by unknown photographer, found at this link and altered by curator (originally color).



  1. Thank you, thank you, I am throwing away all my cookies now and eating the delicious oatmeal on my plate...Yum, yum...May it be a New Year of great health and simple delights. Love, Brenda Shoshanna

  2. Of course this made me go looking for the Wallace Stevens reference: https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poetrymagazine/poems/14575/anecdote-of-the-jar


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