26 September 2006

Christine Garren

[from Christine Garren's Afterworld, 1993]

The Romantics

Save them from dreaming
though already, I can see, their diaries have been opened.
Already they carry lutes into the mandolin fields.
How can they not hear the ferrying beneath them,
Charon’s keel in the sand, the oar lifted?
I know the fields are too beautiful to stop them:
it is true, come to them once, the gold, the hot rushes,
and you are ruined. Look how the silos, the white dairy
vanish before them—the blacksmith stops hammering—
and still they believe.
What are they thinking, what are they waiting for
when they lean back, like gods in the grass,
with wine on their tongues,
their fingers drowsy with the fields’ bright clay?

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