Tuesday, October 27, 2009

When a Friend Dies


When a friend dies
By Marge Piercy
When a friend dies the salmon run no fatter.

The wheat harvest will feed no more bellies.

Nothing is won by endurance but endurance.

A hunger sucks at the mind

for gone color after the last bronze

chrysanthemum is withered by frost.

A hunger drains the day,

a homely sore gap

after a tooth is pulled,

a red giant gone nova,

an empty place in the sky

sliding down the arch

after Orion in night as wide

as a sleepless staring eye.

When pain and fatigue wrestle

fatigue wins. The eye shuts.

Then the pain rises again at dawn.

At first you can stare at it,

Then it blinds you.

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