This are the only two love poems I’ve ever written to the woman that eventually became my wife. It is the only one because (as the poem itself says) words fail me.
Said and Done
When I first saw you speak
Your teeth gripped the air
And your hair was like snakes and devils in curls.
The whirls of leaf litter that played across the streets
Whipped hard as the ground
In the wind blowing bitter northeast.
Whatever I heard was whipped away
But what you say is said in the cut of your face
In the dance and the race of eyes and lips.
What words slip away with the leaves in the gale
Have become, after all only leaves in the gale
And the wind can take the language that fails
Now that it fails me.
When freezing midnight hangs on my breath
And all of my life of the yes in your eyes
In this time of strife
I see the men I was and will and ought and might.
When now and when contest the ground
And then and then the sky
And I see the shine in shadow
And I see the depth in light
That is the time to have these eyes.
When death leaks across the great divide
And seepls black into the banks on the other side
When the touch that breaks or halves of heals
Is breathy soft and starry light
That is the time to have these eyes
That is the time to be alive.