This is the moment when you see again the red berries of the mountain ash and in the dark sky the birds’ night migrations. It grieves me to think the dead won’t see them— these things we depend on, they disappear. What will the soul do for solace then? I tell myself maybe it won’t need these pleasures anymore; maybe just not being is simply enough, hard as that is to imagine.
From Averno by Louise Glück, published by Farrar, Straus & Giroux. Copyright © 2006 by Louise Glück. Reprinted with the permission of the publisher.