His head’s a secret train-set in the attic:
quiet, straightforward, always summer.

The cattle in their fields of baize,
the postman on his bike,

the green sponge trees
by the papier-mâché tunnel, the children

forever waving their stiff handkerchiefs
at the trains that are always on time.

Copyright © 2022 by Robin Robertson. Originally published in Poem-a-Day on April 4, 2022, by the Academy of American Poets.

Must I convey at last the news to thee?
Must I now mourn the love that lived in me?
   Gone with the autumn, with the dying year.
   Gone with the kisses that are yet so near!
Gone with the swallows somewhere o’er the sea!
But with the Spring will he again
Return, will he with me remain?
       Must I till then, remembering naught,
       Forgetting all that love had brought,
   Grope in the shadows of the slain?
           Must I forget the day
           That took my love away,
               And all the happy hours
               That reared for him their towers
               And crowned him with the flowers
           Of all the queens of May?
           Must I alone
           My once my own,
              In my retreat
              The new year greet,
              And winter meet,
           And winds hear moan?
                Not yet
                   Can I
                   But why
                       One clings
                       And sings
                       To things
                   That die?

This poem is in the public domain. Published in Poem-a-Day on April 9, 2022, by the Academy of American Poets.