Time Ghazal

The New Republic

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POETRY JUNE 17, 2013

Time Ghazal

There is fire in the beginning—without it, we thought, we could not see one another.

After only months, a scorched foothill, but covered in evergreen heather.

 
We did not prefer it this way, love, cutting our feet on the stones of the hill as we ascended,

Scratching ourselves among the browns and greens of the heather.

 
On a sunny morning you fancied you might distinguish with the naked eye the deer that sometimes wandered from adjacent forests,

Or even the hares that began to swarm above the line of heather.

 
We simply found ourselves here, the ghosts of the grouse, deer, and hares all straying in the morning fog—

Under which we also strayed, the hillside violet in its fog blossom, can you see this, Heather.

 
You spoke—I listened in my silence, lost in and clinging to it, filled with fear and longing, thinking.

Thinking, come brush the stone of my tongue, grow beside it a flaming branch of heather.

 
On the northern face, we watched the noon sun light the fog just above the rise,

A small child on the hill, the interior of her heart like a gem, all over flowered with heather.

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