This lawn mostly weeds, but green anyway
so who cares, dotted with sunny yellow-
headed dandelions poking up where they don’t belong
but still pretty — not life-changing pretty. One candle
in a closed room, interior image which seems out
of place in this poem which I am trying to grow
so big it is forced to stay outside. The highest branch
holds a ragged bird’s nest, left over from two seasons ago,
& the highest bird holds a cloud & above that
another cloud but above that who knows?
It keeps me up nights, though, this wondering. It puts me
center stage in my own dark opera & I’d have to sing
first in Italian & then German if I wanted
to get the feelings I’m feeling just right.
After the final ache — thunderous applause! My loneliness
& shame have pleased the crowd immensely.
The flowers all the little children bring up to me
have thorns, make me sneeze, could very well be weeds
but—so what?—are beautiful nonetheless.
from his book Big Bright Sun
Used with permission of the poet.