Tuesday, December 20, 2011

the only arts are music and loss

The only arts are music and loss


Theme and variation at the trees' edge,
singular waves lifting water and earth to the air
and the sun at peculiar angles that only crows know
or twilight crumbling from their branches --

I love a woman who will die,
not soon, please, but for sure.
I hide her death in my pocket
like a jackknife or songbird,

because she is a wave lifting earth and water,
an energy, a clean curve in time
more beautiful even than her body, the gorgeous debris
she carries for a while in the air. We saw the trees,

the breaks in cloud cover
that played afternoon light over the fields
like the danger of fingertips on a back,
on a lover's pulse. That night she cried,

knowing the impossibility
of keeping each tree in mind, each note shining on the trunks.
How beautiful our loss then, crest and breaking,
that beauty we would not choose.


  1. This is wonderfully beautiful, every bit of it.

  2. The ache of love so poignantly written. Christmas blessings to you and yours.

  3. "I hide her death in my pocket
    like a jackknife or songbird"

    "even than her body, the gorgeous debris
    she carries for a while in the air"

    - these really are wonderful lines

  4. i have tried many times, but it seems i unable to find words to tell how this overwhelms me. first, the title, perfect in itself, such a gem. then the photos unfold, i read their story, silently, for a while, especially the second and the third, and it is enough. what more could words add, i ask myself. but i am wrong, not add, but shape the texture of the real and of the imaginary differently, hiding what seemed open and revealing what seemed hidden for a while. the poem breaks me. it is one of your best, i think. there is the same force going through it as it is in the one with the bear, something new and powerful, like a wave lifting soul and mind to a place only suspected, but never faced before...

  5. rosaria; thank you. you are very welcome here :-)

  6. Susan: "the ache of love," yes, thank you for saying this. Love seems to require, at least for me, a recognition of the beloved's mortality. Could anyone love an immortal? I doubt it....

  7. Roxana: i hardly dare to reread your words -- i am the one overwhelmed ... and yet i know that you mean them ... it is not so much my poem and pictures, i think, as it is this great soul that you bring here and my gratitude for your being ...