There are some things we just don’t talk about—
Not even in the morning, when we’re waking,
When your calloused fingers tentatively walk
The slope of my waist:
                                          How love’s a rust-worn boat,
Abandoned at the dock—and who could doubt
Waves lick their teeth, eyeing its hull? We’re taking
Our wreckage as a promise, so we don’t talk.
We wet the tired oars, tide drawing us out.

apoetreflects:

But we: we vanish in our feelings. Oh, we breathe
ourselves out, and out; our smell dissolves
from ember to ember. It’s true, someone may tell us:
‘You’re in my blood, this room, Spring floods
with you …’ What good is it? He can’t hold us.
We vanish with him and around him. And the beautiful,
oh, who can hold them back? Some look is always rising
in their faces, and falling. Like dew on new grass,
like heat from a steaming dish, everything we are rises
away from us. O smile, where are you going?
O upturned look: new, warm, the heart’s receding wave—
it hurts me, but that’s what we are. Does the cosmic
space we dissolve into taste of us, then? Do angels
really absorb only what poured out of them,
or sometimes, as if by mistake, is there a trace
of us, too?

Rainer Maria Rilke, from “The Second Elegy, Duino Elegies and The Sonnets to Orpheus, trans. A. Poulin, Jr. (Houghton Mifflin, 1977)

William Stafford: Assurance

poetryshrine:

You will never be alone, you hear so deep
a sound when autumn comes. Yellow
pulls across the hills and thrums,
or the silence after lightning before it says
its names — and then the clouds’ wide-mouthed
apologies. You were aimed from birth:
you will never be alone. Rain
will come, a gutter filled, an Amazon,
long aisles — you never heard so deep a sound,
moss on rock, and years. You turn your head—
that’s what the silence meant: you’re not alone.
The whole wide world pours down.

We used to like talking about grief
Our journals and letters were packed
with losses, complaints, and sorrows.
Even if there was no grief
we wouldn’t stop lamenting
as though longing for the charm
of a distressed face.

The skin of my emotions lies beneath my own
You’ll never feel the heat of this soul
My fever burns me deeper than I’ve ever shown – to you

(Source: dasunheimlichemaneuver)

This hour along the valley this light at the end
       of summer lengthening as it begins to go
this whisper in the tawny grass this feather floating
       in the air this house of half a life or so
this blue door open to the lingering sun this stillness
       echoing from the rooms like an unfinished sound
this fraying of voices at the edge of the village
       beyond the dusty gardens this breath of knowing
without knowing anything this old branch from which
       years and faces go on falling this presence already
far away this restless alien in the cherished place
       this motion with no measure this moment peopled
with absences with everything that I remember here
       eyes the wheeze of the gate greetings birdsongs in winter
the heart dividing dividing and everything
       that has slipped my mind as I consider the shadow
all this has occurred to somebody else who has gone
       as I am told and indeed it has happened again
and again and I go on trying to understand
       how that could ever be and all I know of them
is what they felt in the light here in this late summer