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Poem of the Day: William Aberg

 

VESPERTINE

 

I can still see it, evenings: the sky
an orange liquor
over the coming dark, a woman
brushing the twigs from her hair,
dwarf trees sparkling
with a lavender mist. But it’s
something else, a step
into the old, wonderful story
in which the stars have yet to appear.

In this, her hip
sways under my hand
and I love it, want the walk
home to be farther: the footpath,
maple-eaved, unwinds
through the forest, up hills
lithe with birch
and poplar, down slopes
of laurel and sassafrass
into a gulley where the leaves
lie black with dew. This

is the walk of dreamers,
the vast, patient wood
where we turn
toward each other, everything
so delightfully
unclear, her small shoes
edging up to my own,
one in the light,
one in the dark, the way
a balance of two belongs.

 

—from William Aberg’s The Listening Chamber, The University of Arkansas Press (1997)

 

 

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