Issue 101, Winter 1986
It could happen again. It will.
But this time the geography will be more final,
more certain of the rain and its echo
of something inexplicably sad:
your face drenched in the almost coastal
light of a long and regrettable seclusion.
Not that the grotto will be missing
its idol, for the poor women
will always go there to pray, but that time
may have masked the entrance with vines.
And yet, even apart we were always inside
a continental silence that seemed gorged
with jungles of pleasure. Certainly
we couldn’t turn from it without pain.
And why take the narrow mountain pass
when the village lights below are guilty
of a paralyzing beauty? Blessings
have never seemed closer
to malevolent spells, or the waves more
insistent on darkly giving. And not sometimes,
but always, we are still surprised
by what the undertow, our benefactor, conjures.