Every afternoon The woman sits before an open window guilty of not being air, water –or at least a wing that flies- of being only a woman before an open window.
Every afternoon the sky hangs itself out to dry beyond the open window ashamed of not being man, flesh, body —or at least earth— of being only sky beyond an open window, Secret passion of guilt and shame: a golden woman of violet sky every afternoon through an open window.
We present this work in honor of the poet’s 115th birthday.
why not merely the despaired of occasion of wordshed
is it not better abort than be barren
the hours after you are gone are so leaden they will always start dragging too soon the grapples clawing blindly the bed of want bringing up the bones the old loves sockets filled once with eyes like yours all always is it better too soon than never the black want splashing their faces saying again nine days never floated the loved nor nine months nor nine lives
saying again if you do not teach me I shall not learn saying again there is a last even of last times last times of begging last times of loving of knowing not knowing pretending a last even of last times of saying if you do not love me I shall not be loved if I do not love you I shall not love
the churn of stale words in the heart again love love love thud of the old plunger pestling the unalterable whey of words
terrified again of not loving of loving and not you of being loved and not by you of knowing not knowing pretending pretending
I and all the others that will love you if they love you
Inside the city walls of stone in the pleasure quarter I feel deeply mortified that my talents outshine all the others The river glitters, the waters clear, and the seagulls swim in pairs The sky looks hollow, the clouds serene, and the wild geese fly in rows My embroidered dress partly borrows the hue of hibiscus The emerald wine shares the scent of lotus If I did not reciprocate your feelings Would I dare to feast with you, Master He?
We present this work in honor of the poet’s 155th birthday.
I know not why I love your baffling face, Or, lonely, to your cold caresses steal, Or what the charm persuades my wearied eyes Follow the clues that gleam and, wavering, go, Or spell the syllables of poems new I fancy floating through your gloom or grace! Sphinx of green riddles Time shall not unseal! Mystical knot no stratagem, unties! I do not comprehend you, but I know I am not happy long away from you!
Ardent we come, but that averted gaze Discrowns emotion, and your lips austere, Native to one in whom the gods confide, For us breathe only murmurs dim and lone As are the lullabies of crooning dew Or dwindling dirges of benighted fays For queen marooned in a forgotten mere; Yet though ’tis not for man your witch-words ride Forsaken winds that know not why they moan, I am not happy long away from you!
Do you ignore our presence, or disdain Our pert intrusion on your fettered trees? Is all our knowledge darkness to the light That through their woody crevices you pour, Garnered for them from suns we never knew? Or can it be your brooding peace is pain? Do sighs innumerable build the breeze That mournful walks the soughing waste to-night? But tell me why, if woe be all your store, I am not happy long away from you!
You sprawl your reticence of green and gray Over the no more mute basaltic deep, Below the sister deafness of the sky; Nor myriad boughs’ hypnotic undertones, Shadows in orgy, nor haphazard hue Of flower, nor green delirium will say One shining word to beacon us who creep Amid their bedlamry and forms awry: Yet, Miser, though for bread you give me stones, I am not happy long away from you!
Although we gather only in your glades The tasteless berries of monotony, Withering leaf, frustrated blossom, white Skeleton eucalypt’s unmeaning woe, Or wrack of huddled tea-trees, knouted all askew To serve an old wind’s whim, yet from wan shades Entities ambushed seem to bear to me, On a rhythm craftsman never tameth quite, The Song all poets soaring seek, and so I am not happy long away from you!
Are you the long-forgotten hermitage Wherein immortal cities crept to sleep? And do their rooted folk unresting try, With perfumes wild of some Atlantis old, To link our dormant hearts akin anew? Or young auspicious years do they presage To something watching in me cradled deep, That knows unknown to me the reason why, m an orb’s dim throes, by iron stars controlled, I am not happy long away from you!
Though fierce assault not pilgrim prayer avail, Nor shall we glimpse, however far we seek, The long importuned palace of your pride, Yet you-if darkly-to my faith disclose That duly will Hy-Brasil globe in view! Ay, can it be that glinting is the Grail? Do fairies gather ferns along that creek? Is very God the Merlin that you hide? Ah, can I wonder, necromantic Rose, I am not happy long away from you!
We listen long for words the world awaits, Nor quite lose hope that we shall overhear Strange Huntsmen faint hallooing, or surprise The filmy spears the dark earth-legions throw Across the void against the retinue Auroral of the solar potentates; Yet, though your tongues betray the expectant ear And dappled melancholy foils our eyes, Your trees of whispering knowledge call me so, I am not happy long away from you!
As the falling rain trickles among the stones memories come bubbling out. It’s as if the rain had pierced my temples. Streaming streaming chaotically come memories: the reedy voice of the servant telling me tales of ghosts. They sat beside me the ghosts and the bed creaked that purple-dark afternoon when I learned you were leaving forever, a gleaming pebble from constant rubbing becomes a comet. Rain is falling falling and memories keep flooding by they show me a senseless world a voracious world–abyss ambush whirlwind spur but I keep loving it
because I do because of my five senses because of my amazement because every morning, because forever, I have loved it without knowing why.