Thinking of your blue-shadowed silk
Is music.

How shyly dawn slips out of its own absence
Into its first pearl self, a nacreous birth
Welcomed by silent stones—as though the world
Somehow was cleansed of all hostilities.
The wards of hope in every hospital
Brighten ever so slightly. A pale gray,
A gray full of unearthly tenderness
Visits the window’s curtains, those random folds
And soft wrappings of light. But what’s to come
Is as foreordained as Beethoven’s Great Fugue.
It begins delicately with apricot
Tinting the steeple tops and cornices
Of the municipal facades, and swells
In volume and complexity that turn
Into varieties of lemon, leading
To formal gladness, indisputable gold.
If the heart leaps at this usual miracle,
If the music figures its own destiny,
Think how I feel each day lying beside you,
Watching the easy cadences of your breathing
As you lie gilded in the advancing light,
Recognizing in each familiar feature
A fund of goodness, a calm dormant beauty
That in accord with Galilean laws,
With braided melody in trellised parts,
Rouse with the rising light to blessedness.

This Issue

October 21, 2004