Wednesday Vignette: Otherwise

by Jane Kenyon

“I got out of bed
on two strong legs.
It might have been
otherwise. I ate
cereal, sweet
milk, ripe, flawless
peach. It might
have been otherwise.
I took the dog uphill
to the birchwood.
All morning I did
the work I love.
At noon I lay down
with my mate. It might
have been otherwise.
We ate dinner together
at a table with silver
candlesticks. It might
have been otherwise.
I slept in a bed
in a room with paintings
on the walls, and
planned another day
just like this day.
But one day, I know,
it will be otherwise.” 


One of my favourite poems.

“I planned another day just like this day”: picking flawless and flawed (all delicious) peaches from the trees in the light rain; watching the monarch chrysalis on day seven for signs of readiness, and worrying about the swallowtail caterpillar remaining in one spot on the dill so long; savouring the indigo of the willow gentian flowers; making dinner, making peach bread, working out and feeling strong and limber, reading lovely emails from friends, sipping a luscious Côtes du Rhône; looking forward to reading my book in bed tonight.

One day, maybe tomorrow, it will be otherwise. But for now, I have flawless peaches.


This is the season of peaches, for about two weeks. The season of too many peaches — but of just the right number of neighbours and friends who come to share in our peach richness.



Wednesday Vignette is brought to us by Flutter & Hum.


  1. Has been years since I have had flawless peaches. The poem makes me realize we take so many things for granted. We forget just how great our lives are. An someday it will be otherwise. The peach bread looks delicious. Such a nice post.

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