To be filled with gratitude for life and experience in its entirety–that is the meaning conveyed in B.R. Wilder’s poem “Oh Mother, do not give me bliss”. For without traffic, cracked asphalt, worry, and sleeplessness, the kisses would perhaps not be as soft, the whisky not as good, the wallet not as full. You can’t have the sweet without the sour, as they say. Such is life. A mysterious and elusive poet, B.R. Wilder brings to mind the ancient Chinese hermit poets like Han-shan or Stonehouse, but infused with the urban mystics of the Beat era.
Oh Mother, do not give me bliss Give me cracks in asphalt. Give me hot strong whisky. A bus stuck in traffic. Oh Mother, give me soft kisses. Give me full wallets. Give me sleepless nights sweating worries. Please, Mother. Please! Don't fill my cracked throat with fountains of sweet gold.
Find him on a street corner and he might give you a poem. It will always be free.