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"Geographically speaking, this is just California dreaming, from the Sierras to a ranch in Marin, presided over until very recently by an aged blind sheep named Annie. Otherwise it's one of those solitary evenings with an enhanced sense of elucidation."

—C. D. Wright

Imaginary June

C. D. Wright, 1949

Night:     wears itself away    clouds too dense to skim
over the shear granite rim       only a moment before
someone sitting in a mission chair       convinced  101%
convinced    she could see into her very cells
with her unassisted eyes     even into extremophiles
even with the light dispelled     until the mind sets sail
into its private interval of oblivion     a hand falls from its lap
a pen drops to a carpet     a stand of leaves whispers as if
to suggest something tender      yet potentially heart robbing  
 
Sequel:     to a dream in which faces flare up    fuse     dissolve
but there is a lot of color before their vanishing      and a name
for such phenomena      that comes from the belly of a lamb
rather     not a lamb anymore      from the stomach
of a particular canny but kind and     blind-from-birth ewe 

                                                             

                                                       for Susie Schlesinger


Copyright © 2013 by C. D. Wright. Used with permission of the author. This poem appeared in Poem-A-Day on November 4, 2013. Browse the Poem-A-Day archive.

C. D. Wright

C. D. Wright

Author of numerous volumes of poetry, Wright has served as the poet laureate of Rhode Island, and in 2013 was elected a Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets.

by this poet

poem
A girl on the stairs listens to her father
Beat up her mother.
Doors bang.
She comes down in her nightgown.

The piano stands there in the dark 
Like a boy with an orchid.

She plays what she can
Then she turns the lamp on.

Her mother's music is spread out
On the floor like brochures.

She hears her father
poem
       I take one more drive across town thinking about the retired welding

teacher easing over that rise seeing the parking lot full of white men. I wonder

if he thought he would die in the jungle [where no Vietcong ever called him

[N-word] ] or he would die in front of the bowling alley [without ever having
poem
       Not the mental lethargy in which the days enveloped her

       Nor the depleted breasts not the hand that never knew

       tenderness nor eyes that glistened

       Not the people dragging canvas bags

       through the ragged fields

       Not the high mean whine of mosquitoes

       Not another