Wednesday, February 26, 2020

The Days are Without Boundary Now

The barn at 6 a.m., chickens stirring in darkness as I gather hay for the horses, the emptiness of right before Trudge brings forty some-odd bales. The Christmas tree in the side yard, gaps between its limbs. I do care where the moon is in January. I love you, how could I not.

Ice in the Old Creamery parking lot so we take wide slow turns, minimizing the chance of grazing other cars. Jeremiah eats handfuls of yogurt-covered raisins, eyes slightly narrowed, listening carefully to what Dylan's right hand is doing. Making love at night by outdoor fires and then later remembering how we used to make love at night by outdoor fires, peepers in the distance and - at least in memory - an owl. Something composed, something comprised, something composted.

Main Street wakes up early, trucks coming and going at the little hardware store and the post office. I remember my father making fun of the titles of poetry books - Neruda's Residence on Earth, Carruth's Scrambled Eggs and Whiskey. Yet say that one day an envelope arrives and you cannot decide whether to open it or not but indecision is not the real problem - the real problem is that you cannot go back to the place where decision was inevitable, that is, you can't go back to before the envelope arrived. Chickadees scavenging stale pumpkin bread crumbs - that joy, that satisfaction, that gift.

Birthdays vs. the anniversary of our death - which as Merwin pointed out - we pass every year without knowing. In our youngest daughter's bedroom, I hear Chrisoula's voice low and comforting, itself a comfort. Meanwhile, whales are swallowing plastic and strangling to death in heated seas. Truth is, I never pictured you on your knees but rather pictured picturing you on your knees.

Well, what works, what's helpful, what's fun. The days are without boundary now and my library is shifting from an image of what I've learned to a statement about what I don't know. Tides, too, come and go, ever attentive. Say that leaving Massachusetts for anywhere other than Vermont were possible and you'd be saying what in this life cannot be said.

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