Monday, July 28, 2014

Poem of Thanks by Sharon Olds

Poem of Thanks

Years later, long single, 
I want to turn to his departed back, 
and say, What gifts we had of each other! 
What pleasure - confiding, open-eyed, 
fainting with what we were allowed to stay up 
late doing. And you couldn't say, 
could you, that the touch you had from me 
was other than the touch of one 
who could love for life - whether we were suited 
or not - for life, like a sentence. And now that I 
consider, the touch that I had from you 
became not the touch of the long view, but like the 
tolerant willingness of one 
who is passing through. Colleague of sand 
by moonlight - and by beach noonlight, once, 
and of straw, salt bale in a barn, and mulch 
inside a garden, between the rows - once- 
partner of up against the wall in that tiny 
bathroom with the lock that fluttered like a chrome 
butterfly beside us, hip-height, the familiar 
of our innocence, which was the ignorance 
of what would be asked, what was required, 
thank you for every hour. And I 
accept your thanks, as if it were 
a gift of yours, to give them - let's part 
equals, as we were in every bed, pure 
equals of the earth.

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