My Father Before the Sea
I run through silver slopes and hills
I feel my body as perhaps never before.
The air is a clean mantle coming
From beyond the grasses. From a place
Uninhabited and vast. All is luminous and green.
I chase a bird that rises, descends, rises again
At times conflated with the sky but reappearing
And the silky grasses form swift ripples.
I breathe, there is so much light. I climb a hill
And suddenly you appear before the sea
And the bird, that I cannot reach, flies above us, moves
away and is lost.
But you are there. You say something to me, barely,
and smile the way you were.
How many things we must have recalled. How many
loved and understood. And for me to see you again
before the sea.
How well you looked, father. How well death agreed
How much silence and distance accumulated in these
strange years of your absence
To see you once more, how sweet. And the sea
That we never saw together, how it shone
from the slow swells, like something
incomprehensible, and at peace.
But suddenly a noise, a rough movement on the road
And around me remained the murmur of the bus in
which I traveled
The deaf darkness of the distances without limit. The
return to a journey less
beautiful and more sad, in the middle of the desert.
The cold windows, a few
glimmers of unspeakable forms in the night: the long
highway to darkness.
Which city was I nearing? Where did I want to go?
What was I chasing?
You, a moment ago, there, so far away, before the sea
Me on this side now, on this side of dreams
doubting as always, tense and quiet
journeying through the deep desert of the night
Toward cities not mine.