Ghazal -by Larry Levis

Does exile begin at birth? I lived beside a wide river
For so long I stopped hearing it.

As when a glass shatters during an argument,
And we are secretly thrilled. . . . We wanted it to break.

Always something missing now in the cry of one bird,
Its wings flared against the wood.

Still, everything that is singular has a name:
Stone, song, trembling, waist, & snow. I remember how

My old psychiatrist would pinch his nose between
A thumb & forefinger, look up at me & sigh.

by Larry Levis, 1946 – 1996

 

Larry Levis
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