Wednesday, August 15, 2007



They wandered out of gloom
Into some golden shaft
Of late-afternoon light,
Those tiny filaments
That filled me with delight,
Lifted by an updraft
Or viewless influence
There in the living room.

They might be miniscule
Angels, it seemed to me,
Needing no wings to rise
Or slide back out of sight
But floating effortlessly
Through our interior skies,
Each incandescent memory
A pilot at flight school.

In this world, a second
Is a second is a second.
Time paces forward
With exquisite regularity,
At precisely the same velocity
In every corner of space.

And yet, not exactly!
No doubt a detailed examination
Of the question would show
That pleasure and action
Make the hours seem short.

For a moment I suspected
That my intellect had
Tricked me.
Then I noted the clock;
The clock in the corner.
A moment before, as it seemed,
It had stood at
A minute or so past ten;
Now it was midnight.


The clock indicates the moment--
But what does eternity indicate?
He then became lost
In his own thoughts,
Without really knowing
What he was thinking about.

The past rose before his eyes
Undone after all
And played backward
In memory
And forward in hope.

Now I am on the last
Half-emptied case
Of worm-eaten books
Thickly laden with dust and
It is way past midnight.

Other thoughts fill me
Than the ones I am talking about--
Not thoughts but images, memories.

Memories of the cities
In which I found so many things:
Philadelphia, New York, Washington,
Rome, Florence, Venice . . .

So many memories!

No comments: