Literary Hook: New Year’s resolutions often bring hopefulness

By Christine Swanberg
Author and Poet

Do you have a New Year’s resolution? Here is a poem celebrating the hopefulness of New Year’s resolutions. Good luck with yours!


Renewed and refreshed, I promise to take

this energy with me through the new year.

I solemnly swear to write the poetry

I am called to write,

and when those Elysian fields

fold fallow beneath the snow,

turn my ear and eye to revision.

Replenished and reanimated, I promise

to play the piano regularly,

to relearn all I can about resolution

and recapitulation in music and in life

from this day forth. Restored

and reinvigorated, I elect to live with

good coffee and wine, savory winter soups,

more fruit, and learn the art of ginger.

Re-opened and re-fired, I return with clarity

to my good life and my good home,

and resolve: to have the piano re-tuned,

to re-paint and re-wire the garage,

re-conquer the leaking skylight.

Re-surfacing, I promise to take care

of my health, re-appear at the health club,

re-stock my wardrobe with brighter colors,

re-sort and refine my scarf collection.

I will redefine myself as one with a smile

that puts others at ease.

I will reserve judgments, allowing them

to reincarnate in dreams and poems.

I release all wrong done to me

into the mighty cauldron of the past,

rejoicing in each daily movement

wherever it may lead. Rekindling zest,

I will fervently try to resent or regret nothing,

reclaiming: health, style, standing,

creativity, discipline, abundance,

contentment, and the joy of reinvention.

Christine Swanberg has published about 300 poems in 70 journals and anthologies. An interview with her appears in the 2008 Poet’s Market. She is available for mentoring through Jane’s Stories Foundation. Part of her mentoring is suggesting possible journals. Her books include Who Walks Among the Trees with Charity (Wind Publishing, Kentucky), The Red Lacquer Room (Chiron Publishing, Kansas), The Tenderness of Memory (Plainview Press, Texas), Slow Miracle (Lakeshore Publishing, Illinois), Invisible String (Erie St., Illinois), Bread Upon the Waters (Windfall, Wisconsin) and Tonight on this Late Road (Erie St., IL). She teaches writing at The Clearing in Door County, Wisconsin, and gives workshops and readings thoughout the United States.

From the Jan. 12-18, 2011 issue

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