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dappled things

do you remember heaney and his bog body poems?

how hardin’s slides made me happy when most would find the pictures grotesque?

last year nelson told us in history that the girl with shorn hair

was actually a boy, so seamus’ beautiful letter to her was to a person who never existed.

this saddens me, but i wonder how many poets in the course of creation

have poured their hearts into surreality or shadows of truth.

do you write poetry?  will my poems ever come undone like that?

i am so tired, and like shakespeare’s twins split by sea storms

wonder whether i’m sleeping or waking, mad or well-advised. 

there was a happy fate i had hoped for you, humorously,

to quell the odd images that cropped up in dreams that were more like nightmares.

after childhood came and went i realized the world doesn’t work that way.

i miss your wit and wisdom, your profundity and absurdity, your skin-of-the-teeth punctuality.

i tried to read your face once, when i read your story.  i rediscovered that

you’re clever and that two and two never make five, despite my trying.

when i think of you i, like hopkins, praise God for dappled things.

no matter how life ends up, you will inhabit gerald manley’s exultation

whether you live in a yurt or a hut or an early grave of martyrdom.

i won’t say come home, because that might not be here, but rather hello,

because it’s morning there.

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