One could write screenplays
had one a head bursting with
voices and contacts

with powers-that-be.
Too late for that now, voices
faded from lack of

recognition, friends
changed beyond recognition.

only possible
now in the cool silences
of singular love,

in themselves voices.
I have only to listen
to stories of things.


Say life is a day
thought through dialectically
to no conclusion.

Still ‘the stars come out’
to retell the myths, and trees
whisper overhead

with these stars. Away,
that is, from city lights. A-
way begins the way.


Something keeps calling
from the emptiness of loss
of wife and fortune,

very old maybe
timeless here in these parts. It
speaks only in myth,

Native Ameri-
can. “The Tree of Meaning”? Hold
on, Bringhurst, wait up.


What calls me to this
place—the Pacific North West—
of exile? I’m no

Dante or Ovid,
fellow-travelers in this
world. Not the call of

Nature, though Mt. Hood
looms white to the East in fair
or foul weather. No.

With death in view, one’s
singularity faces
the singular good.


Over the P.A.
this morning nothing but soft
rock, the people’s will.

I stay anyway.
Today in Bristol U.K.
my son’s first born’s first

Communion, so
I think of Mary in white
and her wee friends to-

gether under the
tent of God. Can I say that?
I have no idea.


St. Horace, pray for
me. Lord of the every-
day, the banal mess

of duties to self
and others, the poisoned air
of the Capitol.

A pagan Christian,
more pagan than Christian per-
haps, i’ve been true to

your pages since youth.
And you have enlightened me.
Your art of finesse

has guided me to
this last station. I parse
your lines as of old.


War rooted in love
of place—-this I get but re-
gret. Then there’s the ‘place

of separation’
shaped by the losses of things
and dear persons. This

is where I am now.
I take thought tying my shoes.
The hat of the day.

No form of knowledge,
tragic or otherwise, just
the excess of ‘is.’