Emptying the trash,
going to sleep at night,
just daring to speak 
in any language to anyone:

Our prayers are answered,
even if the words we say
                  are just dreamt-of
admissions of love to strangers,
unsent letters
shoved away, forgotten, at dawn,
like street lights turned off
as the sky begins to gray
                 above the black fields—
all of this is being written down somewhere.

See. Even that ladder leaning up against the barn
wants to make you feel better.
See how easily the dew collects on its white slats,
the way the morning hardly breathes?

See that man who drinks himself to sleep, 
how his face is pressed against the kitchen table—
see how the light from his kitchen shines through the window 
                                            of the old farmhouse?
Somebody sees that light.

From Amnesia by Jonah Winter, FIELD Poetry Series #16, Oberlin College Press. Copyright © 2004 by Jonah Winter. Reprinted by permission of Oberlin College Press. All rights reserved.