Is it possible that spring could be once more approaching? We forget each time what a mindless business it is, porous like sleep, adrift on the horizon, refusing to take sides, "mugwump of the final hour," lest an agenda—horrors!—be imputed to it, and the whole point of its being spring collapse like a hole dug in sand. It's breathy, though, you have to say that for it. And should further seasons coagulate into years, like spilled, dried paint, why, who's to say we weren't provident? We indeed looked out for others as though they mattered, and they, catching the spirit, came home with us, spent the night in an alcove from which their breathing could be heard clearly. But it's not over yet. Terrible incidents happen daily. That's how we get around obstacles.
From Planisphere by John Ashbery. Copyright © 2010 by John Ashbery. Used by permission of Ecco/HarperCollins. All rights reserved.
John Ashbery was born in Rochester, New York, on July 28, 1927.
Date Published: 2010-01-01
Source URL: https://poets.org/poem/alcove