Travelling southeast in the early morning,
in the bloom of spring and at the height of youth;
or moving westward in old age,
just before sunset at the end of November:

These two, the jubilate and the sorrow,
make for odd bedfellows.
Both are heading straight into the sun.
At their marriage they embrace, join hands, bow, and exit left,
leaving a single ancient cedar, standing alone,
presiding over a landscape of soft-hued vegetation,
lined with birdsong, in ambivalent light.

May 5, 1990

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