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Recorded for Poem-a-Day, June 10, 2016.
About this Poem 

“The Japanese word, Boketto, describes something so familiar to me, it’s as if a piece of myself has been returned. I’ve altered the definition by including that the ‘gazing without purpose’ needs to happen by a window.”
—Susan Rich

Boketto

Outside my window it’s never the same—
some mornings jasmine slaps the house, some mornings sorrow.

There is a word I overheard today, meaning lost
not on a career path or across a floating bridge:

Boketto—to stare out windows without purpose.
Don’t laugh; it’s been too long since we leaned

into the morning: bird friendly coffee and blueberry toast. Awhile
since I declared myself a prophet of lost cats—blind lover

of animal fur and feral appetites. Someone should tag
a word for the calm of a long marriage. Knowledge

the heat will hold, and our lights remain on— a second
sight that drives the particulars of a life: sea glass and salt,

cherry blossoms and persistent weeds. What assembles in the middle
distance beyond the mail truck; have I overlooked oceans,

ignored crows? I try to exist in the somehow, the might still be—
gaze upward to constellations of in-between.
 

Copyright © 2016 by Susan Rich. Originally published in Poem-a-Day on June 10, 2016, by the Academy of American Poets.

Copyright © 2016 by Susan Rich. Originally published in Poem-a-Day on June 10, 2016, by the Academy of American Poets.

Susan Rich

Susan Rich

Susan Rich is the author of Cloud Pharmacy (White Pine Press, 2014).

by this poet

poem
That night the air stank, the stars obscured behind wild horses
of clouds. I walked on cobblestones on the edge of something

I could not name: new land of unalterable decisions
like a retinue of assassins coming right for me, who kept coming

in a bad dream that dissolved like a black-
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