Wednesday, January 9, 2013


It's in the repetition
that familiar takes a stand,
and brings us comfort of the known,
reveals some hidden plan.
We tell ourselves that certainty
is waiting in the wings,
illusion clothed in absolutes
which routine surely brings.
And falling in behind it,
contempt comes fully dressed,
familiarity's nemesis;
the same too long expressed.
But human nature holds to that,
which we can recognise,
and sees in custom's firm, sure shape,
a safe place, full defined. 

How important is routine? When is it good; when is it bad? What happens when routine is broken? How do you feel when something usual and expected doesn’t happen? What does that say about us, our lives, our world?


  1. Happy New Year, Ros.
    I agree with the poem's premise and I like the idea that we like routine for its safeness, its known-ness. We tend not to do well with unknown and our lives are shrapneled with it.

    1. And Happy New Year to you too Margo. Yes, perhaps having moved home 32 times I don't get into much routine but I do know that while familiarity does not necessarily breed contempt it does breed familiarity and we equate that with 'being' safe. All illusion of course but a comfortable one.

  2. Happy New Year Ros. My Mother-in-law just got a change in her routine. The morning shopping has switch to the afternoon. Her complaint was that she liked the emptiness of the store in the mornings and it is more crowded in the afternoons. I tried to say they may have switched at least in the winter for safety reasons - as if the roads are bad in the morning, if the sun comes out they will be better in the afternoon. And you don't want to be in an accident with a bus (even a mini-van) full of elders. She says the retirement communities little shop doesn't have enough of what she wants. At almost 90 she doesn't like change.

    I actually penned this before Margo's prompt.

    1. Hi Jules. Happy New Year. I am nearly organised enough to get back and spend more time on your posts. We got back yesterday and are still getting sorted.
      And your mother-in-law may have valid reasons to oppose this change but in general, we all of us change slowly and often reluctantly.

    2. Your mother-in-law knows it just suits someone else's convenience, and if she gets comfortable with the new time they'll turn around and change it again.

  3. I like. Got to have that structure. Then you can have variety.

  4. my family thrives on routine, but there is the danger, especially for couples, of falling too deep into one. Nice piece

  5. So well expressed...there's definitely a balance to be found...comfort and familiarity to the extent of happiness but not to the point of a stagnant spirit. Thought provoking!