Hourglass Years: A Poetry Anthology HTML version

Hourglass Years
Copyright © 2011 Mary Susannah Robbins
The Poems
And so a little has been accomplished
though not so an autobiography
could tell the difference - a rift diminished
there, and there greater uncertainty.
Books are blooming projected hours.
The pen turns cycles no life has told
nor been told - how little we ask of others
these written questions before they are old.
My sorrow and I are that kind of lovers
again though the winter had crystalled over
all but the moment that gleamed so crucial
it almost seemed time was my new lover.
I'm rambling and tired. Life seems a story
set down so lightly no poem could act
to bring up mysteries from the warmth
that will not yield to time or fact.
What is a novel? I've always avoided
words that devour in setting forth,
prepared to eat my own words, prepared
to distinguish life from what it is worth.
They say we are tending to write longer poems.
I tend to sleep less and write shorter lines,
but am willing to try with the best of them,
though I wouldn't take lengths as the signal signs.
Who was that vague blond Indian young one
who wants her poems to be secondary?
She can choose if she's lucky; my values refuse
to consciousness any such hierarchy.
Let it all go, the comparing and growing.
Write what you can't dream and sleep out the rest.
My only worries the lack of presence
that makes the thought count - that kind of test.
O yes, I know it's better, and all that -
good and sad, that's what it is, good and sad
after years of bad and happy. Ararat
is a mirage, the water's where we gad
and a thousand seamews veer their bodies down
the air, and in that silent weight we drown.
Here is no sea to play in, and no youth
to bring us home rejoicing, after hours.
The snake we dreamed of has a human tooth,
Achille's heel's no myth. and all our powers
lead to the inlet and the murky pool
where years ago we played at love and fool.