You came in a dream, yesterday —The first day we met you showed me your dark workroom off the kitchen, your books, your notebooks. Reading our last, knowing-last letters —the years of our friendship reading our poems to each other, I would start breathing again. Yesterday, in the afternoon, more than a year since you died, some words came into the air. I looked away a second, and they were gone, six lines, just passing through. for Adrienne Rich
My house is torn down-- Plaster sifting, the pillars broken, Beams jagged, the wall crushed by the bulldozer. The whole roof has fallen On the hall and the kitchen The bedrooms, the parlor. They are trampling the garden-- My mother's lilac, my father's grapevine, The freesias, the jonquils, the grasses. Hot asphalt goes down Over the torn stems, and hardens. What will they do in springtime Those bulbs and stems groping upward That drown in earth under the paving, Thick with sap, pale in the dark As they try the unrolling of green. May they double themselves Pushing together up to the sunlight, May they break through the seal stretched above them Open and flower and cry we are living.
Copyright © 2000 by Ann Stanford. Reprinted by permission of Copper Canyon Press. All rights reserved.