Although you sit in a room that is gray,
Except for the silver Of the straw-paper, And pick At your pale white gown; Or lift one of the green beads Of your necklace, To let it fall; Or gaze at your green fan Printed with the red branches of a red willow; Or, with one finger, Move the leaf in the bowl-- The leaf that has fallen from the branches of the forsythia Beside you... What is all this? I know how furiously your heart is beating.
Who is my father in this world, in this house,
At the spirit’s base?
My father’s father, his father’s father, his—
Shadows like winds
Go back to a parent before thought, before speech,
At the head of the past.
They go to the cliffs of Moher rising out of the mist,
Above the real,
Rising out of present time and place, above
The wet, green grass.
This is not landscape, full of the somnambulations
And the sea. This is my father or, maybe,
It is as he was,
A likeness, one of the race of fathers: earth
And sea and air.
The difficulty to think at the end of day,
When the shapeless shadow covers the sun And nothing is left except light on your fur— There was the cat slopping its milk all day, Fat cat, red tongue, green mind, white milk And August the most peaceful month. To be, in the grass, in the peacefullest time, Without that monument of cat, The cat forgotten in the moon; And to feel that the light is a rabbit-light, In which everything is meant for you And nothing need be explained; Then there is nothing to think of. It comes of itself; And east rushes west and west rushes down, No matter. The grass is full And full of yourself. The trees around are for you, The whole of the wideness of night is for you, A self that touches all edges, You become a self that fills the four corners of night. The red cat hides away in the fur-light And there you are humped high, humped up, You are humped higher and higher, black as stone— You sit with your head like a carving in space And the little green cat is a bug in the grass.
The exceeding brightness of this early sun
Makes me conceive how dark I have become, And re-illumines things that used to turn To gold in broadest blue, and be a part Of a turning spirit in an earlier self. That, too, returns from out the winter’s air, Like an hallucination come to daze The corner of the eye. Our element, Cold is our element and winter’s air Brings voices as of lions coming down. Oh! Rabbi, rabbi, fend my soul for me And true savant of this dark nature be.