Truth and youth

Birthday of poet Sara Teasdale (1884), who understood life’s bargain opportunity: “When I can look life in the eyes, / grown calm and very coldly wise, / life will have given me the truth, / and taken in exchange — my youth.” WA

Beware young people who think they already know it all, and old people who don’t accept the bargain.

On this day in my youth, in 1974, Richard Nixon resigned the presidency. TD I was sure that would change our politics in a big way, for the better, and usher in generations of wise, honest leadership in America. I wasn’t quite looking life in the eyes then. Now, I no longer expect politics to deliver transformational change.

That’s one of the unfortunate truths the poet may have had in mind. It’s not “the truth,” the only truth – that would not be wise. She was trying to rhyme.

Jon Stewart was telling a truth when he signed off the other night: “bullshit is everywhere.” (Remember when he hosted Harry Frankfurt?) Paul Krugman was too, in yesterday’s Times: “the Republicans can’t be serious.” Still, after all these years.

7 am/6:01, 67/90

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