A Piece of Toast

This place goes quiet
after the breakfast rush. Food
settles the stomach.

Want no longer de-
fines me. Flesh communicates
in words I can’t write

but poets live off.
Bits of muffin and jam stick
to chipped crockery.

Backlit Day

Cold and wet. The bus
passes without slowing down
in a gust of leaves.

The homeless man with
pristine sneakers wanders by.
These images re-

turn the empty self
to itself. Silvery light
lingers, a more than

eloquent silence.
It is the other side of
things, it lets them shine.

Grief’s Otherness

Anything can shine
in the light of its other-
ness. Her face lovely

in death. I suppose
this is how one learns these things.
At the corner of

her mouth, that red drip.
Her face small, white, full of peace.
Now, other to thought.

Yes, I like to think
this way. Now hyperboles
draw us together.

The Geese

As I pile up dead
leaves, I hear them as they call
to each other in

the dark clouds. They know
where they are going. Honk, honk.
I sack the dead leaves.

In the poem I
am down here happy as part
of the plural flow.

On the Bridge

‘Age watches snow fade
from the mountains’ (Jaccottet).
I watch the water

swirl under the bridge.
I think about Jaccottet.
His lines focus my

mind (I am old!) and
in the redoubling the new
whole is beyond me.

I’m really out of
it now, an ecstatic old
man understanding.

Your Possibility in My Life

It’s cold and sunny
today. Old bricks, deep shadows.
Absence is doubled:

you are gone gone gone.
The rose surface of old bricks
redoubles relief.

Milosz passionate
on apokatastasis,
Julian’s ‘All shall

be well.’ Did you re-
turn to being itself to
be your own sweet self?

Who knows. In my life
you are the possibility
of that kind of thing.

In the Moment

Salt and fresh water
mix in the estuary,
ocean and rivers,

the clouds over all.
I came here at the end of
my life, so it seemed.

The clouds redouble
over the bay, luminous
and dark signs of life.