My window at night


Long hours staring
at the thin crevices of light.
So much more dark to study,
but it is the crusty light
of the city, drawing outlines
of rocking leaves,
gray shadowed screens,
and odd-shaped gaps in the blinds
that mesmerizes
(perhaps something blinks) –
a fright for children
to wake up to –
the lens of every dream,
every imagining,
every truthful longing.


My friend, why do you
call on me this way,
when I am alone in the dark
and have no refuge? –
your familiarity,
so foreign to the daylight,
always guessing my thoughts,
though I resent it.
You bounce with ease
in the warm evening air,
wafting over my chest
and around my legs,
afraid of nothing,
confident as a trumpet.
How can I not yield?


Should I leave chocolates for you,
some other childish sacrifice?
Perhaps you just need a favor?
You are not who I am here to please,
but my emptiness is complete without you.
Indeed, a small cup of coffee with you is eternity,
a cure for my numb and pedantic self of origin.
So what must I do to please you?
What must I do?


Breathe air into my words.
Give them spaciousness,
room to roam and be flexed,
to be held, warmed,
to have fingers run across them,
pausing, to know the sense
of being swallowed bit by bit,
or held on the tongue.

Let them open up onto the prairie
to play in all the adventure
of the wide, clear spaces,
to be enthralled by what is plain,
to unwrap the spider’s web,
trace the trails of rain,
how the breeze clips the edges
of the grass, but no more.


Is it time yet?
As I study you,
I think not.
You have decided
not to show yourself,
and I can see
no further into you.
Let us wait together,
and here and there
take turns teasing,
poking, putting on —
and perhaps by accident
reveal a surprise
to us both.


Dark light dark light
dark light dark light
aspen leaves flip and turn
back and forth and around,
soft sequins mirroring
the six-sided moon,
imperceptible, but just
enough to slow time,
open hazy wonder —
dark light dark light
dark light dark light
dark light —


Mostly afraid the rain will stop,
spattering on pavement and irregular bricks,
wind flourishing through wet leaves,
taking its time, coming in time,

hollow pounding on garbage cans.
I hang on random drips
echoing in corners of the side yard,
longing for its everlasting.


Slow moving, a partial dream
unwinding in its own way,
we slow down, we slow it down,
make sure we see —
look, here, now, it passes —
open it, to understand,
to isolate the exact point, and how,
the smooth releasing
shifts into jarred, frayed, jagged.
We go in there,
at that point, slow it down,
make it still, wrestle the shadow,
listen there.


No sound fuller than the wind
tossing leaves up and over
and against our window screen
as we lie here,
breeze smoothing our shoulders
retreating, surrendering
at long last.


My mind goes numb
at the look of your shadow,
gauze hanging there
filtering moonlight
reflected off bright clouds

and I wonder
how far you have come,
how long you have waited
in your bleak disguise
behind this shadow

how many hints you have thrown,
how many desperate plays
you have made
in your tireless willingness
and my mind being numb.

2 thoughts on “My window at night”

  1. pi314chron said:

    Ahhh! Real poetry without the adolescent angst of the usual online fare. Truly “mesmerizing,” to use a form of the word you used in the very first section of this outstanding grouping. I note also that you are/were reading Rexroth’s “100 Poems from the Japanese.” Excellent choice! I have all of Rexroth’s many translations and his collected poems as well and have been rereading him for over 40 years. One could do no better than to read Rexroth to see what is really at the heart and soul of poetry. I’m sooo glad I chose to follow your blog…what a delight! 😛



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