This is the spot:—how mildly does the sun
Shine in between the fading leaves! the air
In the habitual silence of this wood
Is more than silent: and this bed of heath,
Where shall we find so sweet a resting-place?
Come!—let me see thee sink into a dream
Of quiet thoughts,—protracted till thine eye
Be calm as water when the winds are gone
And no one can tell whither.—my sweet friend!
We two have had such happy hours together
That my heart melts in me to think of it.
This poem is in the public domain.
Before you came, things were as they should be: the sky was the dead-end of sight, the road was just a road, wine merely wine. Now everything is like my heart, a color at the edge of blood: the grey of your absence, the color of poison, of thorns, the gold when we meet, the season ablaze, the yellow of autumn, the red of flowers, of flames, and the black when you cover the earth with the coal of dead fires. And the sky, the road, the glass of wine? The sky is a shirt wet with tears, the road a vein about to break, and the glass of wine a mirror in which the sky, the road, the world keep changing. Don't leave now that you're here— Stay. So the world may become like itself again: so the sky may be the sky, the road a road, and the glass of wine not a mirror, just a glass of wine.
From The Rebel's Silhouette by Faiz Ahmed Faiz, translated by Agha Shahid Ali. Copyright © 1991 by Agha Shahid Ali. Used by permission of University of Massachusetts Press.
I believe there is something else
entirely going on but no single
person can ever know it,
so we fall in love.
It could also be true that what we use
everyday to open cans was something
much nobler, that we'll never recognize.
I believe the woman sleeping beside me
doesn't care about what's going on
outside, and her body is warm
which is a great beginning.
Copyright © 2001 by Matthew Rohrer. From Satellite. Reprinted with permission of Verse Press.
In the rooms of a rundown palace
You said, Ruined. You said, Princess.
You said nothing to me
For three long weeks.
The color of that room
When I was a girl and still
German, I stood alone
At the end of the sea.
You may have loved me then
I sent a message through the cages
Of a great whale’s teeth.
For three weeks, I did not sleep.
I set jars of sweet milk and baskets
Of bright berries and red
Marmalade outside your door
In the dream
Where you come to me
I kiss your mouth
Tasting the secret
Letters of your history.
Somewhere in Siberia
A godly ocean of bison
Still roam free.
You, kneeling before me,
The last and final room.
Tonight I lingered over your name, the delicate assembly of vowels a voice inside my head. You were sleeping when I arrived. I stood by your bed and watched the sheets rise gently. I knew what slant of light would make you turn over. It was then I felt the highways slide out of my hands. I remembered the old men in the west side cafe, dealing dominoes like magical charms. It was then I knew, like a woman looking backward, I could not leave you, or find anyone I loved more.
From Is This Forever, or What? Poems and Paintings from Texas by Naomi Shihab Nye. Copyright © 2004 by Naomi Shihab Nye. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers. No part of this book may be used or repoduced without written permission from HarperCollins Publishers, 1350 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10019. All rights reserved.