Published on Academy of American Poets (https://poets.org)


Shirt

I remember once I ran after you and tagged the fluttering
      shirt of you in the wind.
Once many days ago I drank a glassful of something and
      the picture of you shivered and slid on top of the stuff.
And again it was nobody else but you I heard in the
      singing voice of a careless humming woman.
One night when I sat with chums telling stories at a
      bonfire flickering red embers, in a language its own
      talking to a spread of white stars:
                          It was you that slunk laughing
                          in the clumsy staggering shadows.
Broken answers of remembrance let me know you are
      alive with a peering phantom face behind a doorway
      somewhere in the city’s push and fury.
Or under a pack of moss and leaves waiting in silence
      under a twist of oaken arms ready as ever to run
      away again when I tag the fluttering shirt of you.

Credit


This poem is in the public domain.

About this Poem


“Shirt” was published in Chicago Poems (Henry Holt, 1916).

Author


Carl Sandburg

Carl Sandburg was awarded three Pulitzer Prizes in his lifetime—the first in 1919 for his poetry collection Corn Huskers, the second in 1940 for his biography Abraham Lincoln: The War Years, and the third in 1951 for Complete Poems.

Date Published: 1916-01-01

Source URL: https://poets.org/poem/shirt-0