Note to Erin on Beeches and Arvo Pärt
Remember that day driving at winter's end,
when flakes of the last snow were starting to fall,
and we stopped the car before a scruffy hill
where sapling beeches line the rutted road?
Those pale-copper, persistent leaves gather light
and hold it, never falling, stubborn,
as if they render brightness from the air.
“Für Alina” was our music that day,
the distinct notes clinging, aching to be notes,
then lasting, fading slowly, radiant.
Today, hundreds of miles from you, I walked
among beeches, when hard, stingy pellets of snow
shushed on the unthawed spring ground,
and despite the clouds' argument for darkness,
wind licked gleams from the edges of beech leaves.
I wondered who Alina was. I thought of you. That's all.