To you who used to read my letters
Smudged on Corrasable Bond
Or handwritten in fountain pen script,
A long distance view makes clear
What was impossible, then, to see.
The interpenetration of craft and illusion
Allows that it was you I loved, not words.
But then love was so verbal, a clever stack of
Carefully arranged sounds? Did nights
On the beach simply help us play out what
Had been said and written down? We swam there
Too, and did not drown. Later summers,
I wrote to other girls and found that they
Did not have the right vocabulary, the right ear.
So I went back to writing you.
The freight of those letters was too much
For any donkey to bear, much less
Your slender frame. Your intelligence led you,
Stealing away. Perhaps you let letters slide to the ground.
Or perhaps they exist in some attic box
Where time has made them meek.
Don’t go looking.
I’ve. re-arranged the stack.