Broken Things

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Those who find another use for broken things

are saints. The chipped teapot for a planter, a cracked saucer

for its bottom, the torn dress become clothes for a doll

all converts to another life from the hand that rescues.

Thrift, some call it, that compulsion to save everything,

to still make it useful, but I call it grace—the way a person’s life can

sometimes be resurrected from the ashes of suffering or loss

to gleam through crack, chip, or tear.

in hands that do not abandon.

—Sally Ito teaches creative writing at Canadian Mennonite University, and lives in Winnipeg with her husband and two children. This poem is from her newest collection, Alert to Glory (Turnstone Press, 2011), and is used by permission.

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