What can the sky say, waiting for the sun,
which may or may not come, the leafless trees,
unless I speak for them, their waiting deep
as tap roots’ cold, suspended burrowing?
I can always write another poem
but I am tired of speaking of the world.
If he wants a spring poem, let the wren
on my windowsill sing it: he’s doing it.
I have to talk about two always here
whenever I am, so I’m not alone.
Why not just say it. One is God, one Death.
From the beginning they’ve been in my house.
Death owns it; he pays the mortgage on time.
Some day he’ll make the last payment, move in.
That’s all there is to Death, no mystery.
Now this question of God. I know he’s here
as certain as I am of gravity
when I go out to search for signs of spring.
My feet squish the still-frozen ground.
I know I’m here by that sound, like a child
I step down on certain earth.
The earth answers: give voice to what I say
even if your poem just says: love Peter.
The Image archive is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.