Thursday, December 15, 2016

Definite Shadows

This Northern Michigan structure has been torn down now, 
but I often used to wonder about its uses and history
as I rounded the corner towards our home in the woods. jhh


by Adrienne Rich


Burnt by lightning nevertheless
she’ll walk this terra infinita

lashes singed on her third eye
searching definite shadows for an indefinite future

Old shed-boards beaten silvery hang
askew as sheltering
some delicate indefensible existence

Long grasses shiver in a vanished doorway’s draft
a place of origins as yet unclosured and unclaimed

Writing cursive instructions on abounding air

If you arrive with ripe pears, bring a sharpened knife

Bring cyanide with the honeycomb
call before you come

The Paris Review, Issue 200, Spring 2012.
(This is just the astonishing first section of a four-section poem.)

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