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


In Memoriam Mae Noblitt

This is just a place:
we go around, distanced, 
yearly in a star's

atmosphere, turning 
daily into and out of 
direct light and

slanting through the 
quadrant seasons: deep 
space begins at our

heels, nearly rousing 
us loose: we look up 
or out so high, sight's

silk almost draws us away:
this is just a place:
currents worry themselves

coiled and free in airs 
and oceans: water picks 
up mineral shadow and

plasm into billions of 
designs, frames: trees, 
grains, bacteria: but

is love a reality we 
made here ourselves--
and grief--did we design
 
that--or do these, 
like currents, whine 
in and out among us merely

as we arrive and go:
this is just a place:
the reality we agree with,

that agrees with us, 
outbounding this, arrives 
to touch, joining with

us from far away:
our home which defines 
us is elsewhere but not

so far away we have 
forgotten it:
this is just a place.

Credit


From A Coast of Trees by A. R. Ammons, published by W. W. Norton & Company. Copyright © 1981 by the estate of A. R. Ammons. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Author


A. R. Ammons

Archie Randolph Ammons was born outside Whiteville, North Carolina, on February 18,

Date Published: 1981-01-01

Source URL: https://poets.org/poem/memoriam-mae-noblitt