November 13, 2012

Michiko is dying in the house behind me,/ the long windows open so I can hear / the faint sound she will make when she wants / watermelon to suck or so I can take her / to a bucket in the corner of the high-ceilinged room / which is the best we can do for a chamber pot. / She will lean against my leg as she sits / so as not to fall over in her weakness. / How strange and fine to get so near to it. / The arches of her feet are like voices / of children calling in the grove of lemon trees, / where my heart is as helpless as crushed birds.                                                                                                                                                  from "Finding Something" —Jack Gilbert, 1925-2012