The light expands
though it seems to flow
through dry-leaved trees
tempting early snow:
It hangs in the air,
swirling sleepy and slow.

A river barge
Breathing low and soft
gathers crested waves,
bringing its forehead clear
of the sluggish foam,
singing its moaning song
tacked to a smooth iron sky,
bringing the hour near
of another departure.
We wait and stay,
but our paths divide
and with it we stray.

The light expands:
we watch it grow.
It overwhelms from above
and glitters below
through street-caressing puddles;
in our eyes they glow
and extend in patterns.
We can never know.

December 12, 1973

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