On a country porch a traveler in shadow
is such a darkness you could marry
one summer night a lament with a mild wind,
refrain to refrain. Drive the gravel to lyric,
and a movement never lies,
a fate takes shape, Noguchi's metal dress.
Bead your lashes with a wax candle,
compose a face
human and flawed like art out of nothing
and try for a few hours to live forever
though they'll cut you in two,
the river and the moon.
Live alone in time, each gesture
the ruth of a sudden rain,
a wind turning through a red farmhouse
flush with cloud, Appalachia,
cold air of the white camellia.
It's the human gait.
On the frontier a woman fell backwards
in a black evening gown,
her sinewy waist an enemy of snow.
Leaving an expanse so wide, sweet audience,
we did not want the night to end.
We did not want to leave the building.