Read To Me – Day Twenty-Six

Time, by Louise Glück

There was too much, always, then too little.
Childhood: sickness.
By the side of the bed I had a little bell —
at the other end of the bell, my mother.

Sickness, gray rain. The dogs slept through it. They slept on the bed,
at the end of it, and it seemed to me they understood
about childhood: best to remain unconscious.

The rain made gray slats on the windows.
I sat with my book, the little bell beside me.
Without hearing a voice, I apprenticed myself to a voice.
Without seeing any sign of the spirit, I determined
to live in the spirit.

The rain faded in and out.
Month after month, in the space of a day.
Things became dreams; dreams became things.

Then I was well; the bell went back to the cupboard.
The rain ended. The dogs stood at the door,
panting to go outside.

I was well, then I was an adult.
And time went on — it was like the rain,
so much, so much, as though it was a weight that couldn’t be moved.

I was a child, half sleeping.
I was sick; I was protected.

And I lived in the world of the spirit,
the world of the gray rain,
the lost, the remembered.

Then suddenly the sun was shining.
And time went on, even when there was almost none left.
And the perceived became the remembered,
the remembered, the perceived.


Month after month, in the space of a day.
Things became dreams; dreams became things.

And time went on, even when there was almost none left.
And the perceived became the remembered,
the remembered, the perceived.

There are no real excuses for me not being better acquainted with Louise Glück — she is a poet constantly recommended by friends who love poetry, and who love her. Now that I’ve read this, I can understand why so many students of poetry love her.

“Time” is another treasure I’ve found in The Best American Poetry, 2001. I’ve got to have a copy of this book.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s