Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Dear John

A fruitless hope is falling in love with

Someone who's already dead.

I don't recommend it.

To be divided by centuries is

Far worse than being star-crossed.

I sat on a hard metal stool

Between book shelves, a worn

And tattered volume on my knees.

Its pages were rough between

My fingers, its scent of memory.

The words, full of sweet

Somethings, written to a lover

I imagined was me (fair creature

Of an hour). Darling Girl

Should be my name.

If only I could be married

To a poem!

The final letter, from Rome,

In November, before the magic

Hand of chance closed forever

Your gloom-pleased eyes,

Made me cry, and think.

Dear John, I love you, but

It will never work.

Before I cease to be, I will

Dry out many ballpoint pens, whether

My words fill high-piled, worn

And tattered books

Or not.

(This is about John Keats, in case you couldn't tell.)

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