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Poem of the Month - July 2003
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The End of the Absolute
from Summer Grass

When I was dead
I did not know that I was dead

it was a long almost
a benign age
and all that time time was not
moving but only a silvery ribbon
in the shadowy deep
valley of no change

dead so long dead
and I never loved any of them
but who would blame
the hound that can't see colour
or the white cat deaf

I lived by arrangements
with others sometimes
in respect sometimes near affection
but never close ...

(when I was dead I did not know
that I was dead)

only as you moved
did my stiff limbs go slack
only as you heaved your body up
out of an open pit
looked me full in the face
and forced yourself to speak
could I feel the granite weight
of an enormous sadness lift

until then I had always
believed in the absolute
failure of human love

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