Summer 1998 • Vol. XX No. 3/4 PoetryJuly 1, 1998 |

Its Difficult Name

From California my sisterFour years ago called To say two feetOf rain had Fallen during morning onThe desert place she and I once survived. She said,Would you believe it? My wooden ducks, in the yard,The ducks are floating away. She said, I don't even knowWhat it means He said I've got.Neither did I, So I went to the medical journals,And the growth rates, and charts, And learned in the living rootsOf a dead language Its difficult name,And I said it out loud Until it lost all meaningAnd its sound carried out over Everything bird-dispersedAnd breeze- and moisture- Borne so intimatelyInto the soils and waters of the earth That I find its touch everywhere—There, and here, and now— As when one year of her death today,I sound it again, inwardly, to myself, And its meaning has no language, still,And does not Come back at all.

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From California my sisterFour years ago called To say two feetOf rain had Fallen during morning onThe desert place she and I once survived. She said,Would you believe it? My […]

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