At eventide, when the proxy
of being melts into the maple’s
black pool, when stars are annulled
and a perseid moon dangles
the heads of our love, we,
born of stone resume our hardening.
Hard such that metallic they come,
these riverine tales that sprout
as headwaters from an uncleaved rock
only to crust on our cheeks, on the rims
of our eyes — lime and the salts
that spark a wound. Thus sparked,
At eventide, stripped of light and all
that drags us on: the fury of fingers,
the finches’ golden scrap, the cruel
commerce of posture and propulsion,
we are left at the mouth of it, eventide,
to wrest deep our loves from oblivion.
But what we find there, in our dank
travail, fixed before memory’s dim torch,
animate only by flicker or twitch,
the gray husks of those with which
we strode the sun, vagrant to the loss
that marks our passage, our severed way.