Friday, July 03, 2015

Whispered Sighing

Near the day's end, the willow fills with sunlight.
The birds are quieter now.

At any moment in our life we are entangled in all the past of humanity, and that past is primarily language, so we live as upon a background of incessant chorus, and of course it is possible to imagine the presence of everything which has ever been spoken.
(Headnote by Czeslaw Milosz.)

Sitting over words
very late I have heard a kind of whispered sighing
not far
like a night wind in pines or like the sea in the dark
the echo of everything that has ever
been spoken
still spinning its one syllable
between the earth and silence

W. S. Merwin
(1927-    )

from A BOOK OF LUMINOUS THINGS; an international anthology of poetry. Edited and with an introduction 
by Czeslaw Milosz, Harcourt, 1996

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