Tuesday, April 08, 2014


Forgive me for my Merwin jag. I find him hard to resist. Perhaps it's the time of year:

a single cell
found that it was full of light
and for the first time there was seeing
I was a bird
I could see where the stars had turned
and I set out on my journey
in the head of a mountain goat
I could see across a valley
under the shining trees something moving
in the green sea
I saw two sides of the water
and swam between them
look at you
in the first light of the morning
for as long as I can

-- W.S. Merwin

1 comment:

Katherine C. James said...

You can't post too much W. S. Merwin, in my opinion. I love the poem you posted, because it is beautiful, and because I think it is another Paula poem. I love that he found love that he did not think he would find, and that it has stayed. I don't think I can post a live link in a comments section so I'm pasting a W. S. Merwin Paula duo from my Tumblr that I think you will appreciate, though you may already know them.

"I was never sure that monogamy would overtake me. But it did when I met Paula." —W. S. Merwin in conversation with Bill Moyers. 26 June 2009.


Coming into the high room again after years
after oceans and shadows of hills and the sounds
after losses and feet on stairs

after looking and mistakes and forgetting
turning there thinking to find
no one except those I knew
finally I saw you
sitting in white
already waiting

you of whom I had heard
with my own ears since the beginning
for whom more than once
I have opened the door
believing you were not far

—W. S. Merwin. The Rain in the Trees. (Knopf, 1988.)


Let me imagine that we will come again
when we want to and it will be spring
we will be no older than we ever were
the worn griefs will have eased like the early cloud
through which the morning slowly comes to itself
and the ancient defenses against the dead
will be done with and left to the dead at last
the light will be as it is now in the garden
that we have made here these years together

of our long evenings and astonishment

—W. S. Merwin. The Shadow of Sirius. (Copper Canyon Press, 2009.)