Grief

A poem

Don’t speak to me of heartbreak, I have an argument

with habits of metaphor—it’s not the heart

 

In April I brought tulips white

pale green and orange in from the garden

 

you mean but the ineffable—character soul

locus of feeling—don’t tell me that muscle

 

and with his fine pen he drew page after

page of delicate ravishing tulips

 

is made whole by breaking—the thready beat

made stronger if ravaged, then repaired

 

In June plush peonies named for Paean

the physician to ancient gods

 

Could we salvage joy from each day loosening

Then July I brought the overabundance

 

of the Oriental lily’s perfume

our ravenous hold on the world?

 

his hand transfigured the rich ivory paper

Where could it be written,

 

to a garden room various edenic alive

why would anyone say, why would

 

a rabbi teach the heart survives by breaking?

August now and great maples tall oaks darken

 

and cool the garden so flowers know not to thrive

that in black ink my love may still shine bright

 

Presented by

Gail Mazur’s most recent collection is Figures in a Landscape (2011). She lives in Cambridge and Provincetown, Massachusetts.

How to Cook Spaghetti Squash (and Why)

Cooking for yourself is one of the surest ways to eat well. Bestselling author Mark Bittman teaches James Hamblin the recipe that everyone is Googling.

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

How to Cook Spaghetti Squash (and Why)

Cooking for yourself is one of the surest ways to eat well.

Video

Before Tinder, a Tree

Looking for your soulmate? Write a letter to the "Bridegroom's Oak" in Germany.

Video

The Health Benefits of Going Outside

People spend too much time indoors. One solution: ecotherapy.

Video

Where High Tech Meets the 1950s

Why did Green Bank, West Virginia, ban wireless signals? For science.

Video

Yes, Quidditch Is Real

How J.K. Rowling's magical sport spread from Hogwarts to college campuses

Video

Would You Live in a Treehouse?

A treehouse can be an ideal office space, vacation rental, and way of reconnecting with your youth.

More in Entertainment

More back issues, Sept 1995 to present.

Just In