“Write a free form poem about the formula for happiness.”
Formula for Happiness
You want to know how to be happy, do you?
A seeker, huh? Pursuer of that golden blessed state we all crave.
This isn’t going to be easy for you to hear, so I’m giving you a chance to walk away.
No? Still here?
Okay you asked for it.
If you want to be happy, you have to realize that you are going to die.
You’re dying right now, in fact.
Do you feel that?
Down in your guts?
Maybe at the base of your skull?
Those are Death’s cold and grasping fingers, just making sure he knows where you are.
And someday that bony hand is going to close over yours.
Still with me?
Whoa, you okay, buddy? Need to sit down a minute?
No? You’re good?
So, now that you get that, what is there?
Heart thumping in your chest, maybe next to the heart of another, if you are very very lucky.
There’s the way the sun kisses the clouds before it wakes up for the day; the moon rising to say good night to Brother Sun and they both hang in the sky for a few minutes.
Your cat’s tufty ears and her whiskers brushing your arm in the morning; your dog’s slobber when you come home.
Sheets fresh from the clothes line in spring; underwear fresh from the dryer on a winter’s day.
The smell of the earth after a rain; dew on the grass.
The first day of summer.
The silent sound that snow makes, muffling the world, softening it.
Hot chocolate and children’s voices calling out to home from the sledding hill.
You can still have all of these things, but you have to appreciate each of them as they come.
And if you are very very brave.
You can have