The obvious is difficult To prove. Many prefer The hidden. I did, too. I listened to the trees. They had a secret Which they were about to Make known to me— And then didn't. Summer came. Each tree On my street had its own Scheherazade. My nights Were a part of their wild Storytelling. We were Entering dark houses, Always more dark houses, Hushed and abandoned. There was someone with eyes closed On the upper floors. The fear of it, and the wonder, Kept me sleepless. The truth is bald and cold, Said the woman Who always wore white. She didn't leave her room. The sun pointed to one or two Things that had survived The long night intact. The simplest things, Difficult in their obviousness. They made no noise. It was the kind of day People described as "perfect." Gods disguising themselves As black hairpins, a hand-mirror, A comb with a tooth missing? No! That wasn't it. Just things as they are, Unblinking, lying mute In that bright light— And the trees waiting for the night.
Charles Simic - 1938-
Pigeons at Dawn
Extraordinary efforts are being made To hide things from us, my friend. Some stay up into the wee hours To search their souls. Others undress each other in darkened rooms. The creaky old elevator Took us down to the icy cellar first To show us a mop and a bucket Before it deigned to ascend again With a sigh of exasperation. Under the vast, early-dawn sky The city lay silent before us. Everything on hold: Rooftops and water towers, Clouds and wisps of white smoke. We must be patient, we told ourselves, See if the pigeons will coo now For the one who comes to her window To feed them angel cake, All but invisible, but for her slender arm.