La Conversation Galante
Things return to their places, settle
where they used to be: umbrellas, overcoats,
lamps, your books. The silence overwhelms.
Weekends my sister visits, and we talk.
Nights I read your letters, when they come.
Spring’s come as it always has, like an immense
wind from the north. We'll have clear weather,
from now on. Or should I add, I hope.
This morning I counted four sparrows
in the trees - not a flock, but there it is.
I have heard them, hushed, hiding in the eaves,
trembling; then rising at the slightest gust,
whirling like a rush of leaves out, up, into the air.
If it should rain tonight, thunder and lightning,
I should lie in bed all night, listening.
Perhaps it was the summer that led us so,
giddy with the season, the sunlight
and the garden encircling our wandering
like an arm around the shoulder,
meandering all the way into the wood.
Sometimes that evening comes back, flaring
apart from all the rest, like an ember blown back
from ash. How strange summers can be!
Umbrellas, books and lamps, the rain: one seems
not to speak about anything else, afterwards -
Only perhaps the weather, dear friend, if then.
When shall we see each other at last?