This was written in 2005 while watching a group of rowers across the Thames.
My thoughts were still,
No wind across the water.
Though voices carry far in the evening
I saw across, but did not hear
Your chatter or the loud hard clatter
Of your feet upon the boarded pier.
It was a freak of nature
That refused to carry your noise to me
And let me see you, and all of yours
Shout like ghosts shout
Play like shadows play
In the failure of all science in that instant,
I knew no speech
But instead a knowledge independent of sense
And a language where meaning is meant,
And not guessed at.
The yellow light
And the restless tall grass told me
Every beat and every blink.
Where your leg touched the water
And sent a whisperless ripple,
I knew you through the river.
Saw the pulse in your wrist
Enunciated each time in the tones
Of a child raised before the rupture of tongues.
It was simple
As it crossed the reach, across the reeds
And changed me.
Where I look up, trees court the sky
And cover it at once
Lies of omission scrawled
Over the high cloud and cutting
The jet trails with branches.
The sun cuts your silhouette
And blinds me.