For my friend Bruce, who believes in lists
For the brackish water, and electricity
That charge our thoughts and spines.
For the woman who made the first pot.
For fish I have seen in clear water
In dreams that are the uncaught words of poetry.
For charity, joy, peace, patience
That have always roamed the woods in front of me.
For the slow speech of stones.
For the colors of sky and sea
That meld on certain evenings, letting slip
The ghosts who bring us to our prayers.
For wells and all things watery, including biting snow.
For believing in Adam and Eve
And Sister Mary John Francine who called them St. Adam and St. Eve
And all the believing that followed.
For Wordsworth, who first called Space Time’s brother.
For the geometries of arms and legs
That bring our hearts to breathe.
For vows of marriage, vows of silence, vows
Of chastity that bend the starlight to the earth.
For nicotine, money and air conditioning.
For holy names and graves.
For the time it takes
To see the men and women
I’ve despised men and women again.
For the grace of growing old
And thinking that it’s wisdom.
For that share of intimacies
I don’t share with words
But recollect with sadness and content.
For the grace of growing old/ And thinking that it’s wisdom.