I’m Lucy Bellwood, and you’re receiving this email because you expressed an interest in The Right Number, a friendly, experimental phone line.
This session’s prompt is about gratitude. I won’t try to craft a pithy introduction because there’s already a poem that sums up my feelings on the subject. Here it is.
by W. S. Merwin
with the night falling we are saying thank you
we are stopping on the bridges to bow from the railings
we are running out of the glass rooms
with our mouths full of food to look at the sky
and say thank you
we are standing by the water thanking it
standing by the windows looking out
in our directions
back from a series of hospitals back from a mugging
after funerals we are saying thank you
after the news of the dead
whether or not we knew them we are saying thank you
over telephones we are saying thank you
in doorways and in the backs of cars and in elevators
remembering wars and the police at the door
and the beatings on stairs we are saying thank you
in the banks we are saying thank you
in the faces of the officials and the rich
and of all who will never change
we go on saying thank you thank you
with the animals dying around us
taking our feelings we are saying thank you
with the forests falling faster than the minutes
of our lives we are saying thank you
with the words going out like cells of a brain
with the cities growing over us
we are saying thank you faster and faster
with nobody listening we are saying thank you
thank you we are saying and waving
dark though it is
Call and tell me about someone you would like to thank. You don’t have to know them personally. They don’t have to be alive. They just need to have roused your gratitude in some form.
To leave a message, dial 1-503-673-6267. You’ll have three minutes to answer however you’d like after the pre-recorded prompt.
I’ll be keeping an ear out, dark though it is.
P.S. I spoke to local journalist Destiny Johnson about the genesis of this project and what it means to me to be a secret keeper. If you want a little more Right Number in your life, you can watch our interview here.