William Stanley Merwin

(September 30, 1927 / New York / United States)

A Letter to Ruth Stone


Now that you have caught sight
of the other side of darkness
the invisible side
so that you can tell
it is rising
first thing in the morning
and know it is there
all through the day

another sky
clear and unseen
has begun to loom
in your words
and another light is growing
out of their shadows
you can hear it

now you will be able
to envisage beyond
any words of mine
the color of these leaves
that you never saw
awake above the still valley
in the small hours
under the moon
three nights past the full

you know there was never
a name for that color

From 'The Shadow Of Sirius'
Publisher: Copper Canyon Press (September 1, 2008)

Submitted: Monday, May 09, 2011
Edited: Monday, May 09, 2011

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