around 530 is
a beautiful peaceful
you can just
hear the dog
David lifts his smoke
in the middle
bout the top shelf
or so. The party
I sd that’s my col-
works and every
stared my home
was so small
I’m not particularly
into the task
at the moment
it’s like that
on a tiny
I think of as
with the larger
one on a
floating in air
love made it
me love made
I love a house
I fear a house
a house never
I live in a
room a personal
one. A young
much like me
please it was
for a party
going fast. How
of a drug
want to go
slow. To drink
thing for a
to lick my
I met a dog
dog named Alan
now & then
her chest &
thing. You didn’t
I don’t want
the mother of
when she squeezes
cozy I know
to say. I can open
what I mean
Below the gardens and the darkening pines
The living water sinks among the stones,
Sinking yet foaming till the snowy tones
Merge with the fog drawn landward in dim lines.
The cloud dissolves among the flowering vines,
And now the definite mountain-side disowns
The fluid world, the immeasurable zones.
Then white oblivion swallows all designs.
But still the rich confusion of the sea,
Unceasing voice, sombre and solacing,
Rises through veils of silence past the trees;
In restless repetition bound, yet free,
Wave after wave in deluge fresh releasing
An ancient speech, hushed in tremendous ease.
Held in a late season
At a shifting of worlds,
In the golden balance of autumn,
Out of love and reason
We made our peace;
Stood still in October
In the failing light and sought,
Each in the other, ease
And release from silence,
From the slow damnation
Of speech that is weak
And falls from silence.
In the October sun
By the green river we spoke,
Late in October, the leaves
Of the water maples had fallen.
But whatever we said
In the bright leaves was lost,
Quick as the leaf-fall,
Brittle and blood red.
For Kenneth Rexroth, 1950
Love gives all its reasons
as if they were terms for peace.
Love is this but not that
that but not this.
Love as it always was.
But there is no peace in the mountain
cleft where the fruit bats scatter
from the light.
There is no peace in the hollow when
the heat snuffs night’s blue candle.
The outline of brown leaves on
the beach is the wind’s body.
A crow is squawking at the sun
as if the screech itself is dawn.
Let me hear every perfect note.
How I loved that jasper morning.
When summer ended
the leaves of snapdragons withered
taking their shrill-colored mouths with them.
They were still, so quiet. They were
violet where umber now is. She hated
and she hated to see
them go. Flowers
born when the weather was good – this
she thinks of, watching the branch of peaches
daring their ways above the fence, and further,
two hummingbirds, hovering, stuck to each other,
arcing their bodies in grim determination
to find what is good, what is
given them to find. These are warriors
distancing themselves from history.
They find peace
in the way they contain the wind
and are gone.
I have wanted other things more than lovers …
I have desired peace, intimately to know
The secret curves of deep-bosomed contentment,
To learn by heart things beautiful and slow.
Cities at night, and cloudful skies, I’ve wanted;
And open cottage doors, old colors and smells a part;
All dim things, layers of river-mist on river—
To capture Beauty’s hands and lay them on my heart.
I have wanted clean rain to kiss my eyelids,
Sea-spray and silver foam to kiss my mouth.
I have wanted strong winds to flay me with passion;
And, to soothe me, tired winds from the south.
These things have I wanted more than lovers …
Jewels in my hands, and dew on morning grass—
Familiar things, while lovers have been strangers.
Friended thus, I have let nothing pass.
If this is peace, this dead and leaden thing,
Then better far the hateful fret, the sting.
Better the wound forever seeking balm
Than this gray calm!
Is this pain’s surcease? Better far the ache,
The long-drawn dreary day, the night’s white wake,
Better the choking sigh, the sobbing breath
Than passion’s death!