[from Jay Wright's The Presentable Art of Reading Absence, Dalkey Archive, 2008]
I am speaking to you now.
Surely, we have arrived.
This is an infallible claim:
to sit in this garden and to know it,
to watch the evasive sun play
over the juniper,
and to feel the absent
hemlock breathing in the distance,
and to covet the astonishment of astilbe
embellishing a hidden path.
So the two of us sit,
mov'd with reverentiall anger,
no longer at rest.
This must be the moment of separation,
the first betrayal,
the first ferrying of a constellation
that reminds me that stars
form in the ash of other stars
as they approach their end.
I would betray this ontological event;
I would trace my birth on water,
in the turbulence of a nurturing faith.
I say that my star is nearest earth,
and that my light is mortal.
these clarions of mid-May,
twins of the deep song,
given substance in spiritual desire,
step diffidently into the garden.
I say Thou seest me here at midnight,
searching the other side of life.
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