for Susan Stewart
They lie together in the hidden place
Between the bookends, hidden in the heart,
Where time makes of its subjects reruns of art:
The hazy children wandering through the forest:
Or the "little phrase," wrung from the purest
Music indistinguishable from space.
The bird that perched and sat above the door.
The cool sunlight on the granary floor.
These things and their negations are all true.
All these things I know. And what I knew
Is sand, and the hours answer with a chime.
The sin is will: the madness to restore,
The will to what was so indefinite before
It seems a story, painful as a knife
Twisted in the wound, that returned to life
Just once, the once of once upon a time.
North Point North, Harper Collins, 2002
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