Fall 1980 • Vol. II No. 4 PoetryOctober 1, 1980 |

Reaching Around

for Walt Whitman   I have perceiv'd that to be with those I like is enough …To pass among them or touch any one, or rest my arm ever so lightly round his or         her neck for a moment, what is this then? I do not ask any more delight, I swim in it as in a sea.                  1972    We're all uproarious, Philip and I and his     preposterously pregnant wife who can't get up,     their sofa's sagged too low, just since yesterday     she's too immense—or tired, it's late,     I should think about rising, but for me as well     that's hard. Harder each time in fact     to leave this house, though on the carpet I'm     dissembling more and more: for the past hour     I've been aware, as mercifully they're not     yet, of the slow ache secretly uncoiling     down the long inner muscles of my arms,     clamped round me for safe-k

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