A Memory of the Future

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I will say tree, not pine tree.
I will say flower, not forsythia.
I will see birds, many birds,
flying in four directions.

Then rock and cloud will be
lost. Spring will be lost.
And, most terribly,
your name will be lost.

I will revel in a world
no longer particular.
A world made vague,
as if by fog. But not fog.

Vaguely aware,
I will wander at will.
I will wade deeper
into wide water.

You’ll see me, there,
out by the horizon,
an old gray thing,
who finally knows

gray is the most beautiful color.

Elizabeth Spires’s most recent collection is The Wave-Maker (2008). She teaches at Goucher College.
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