Morning, Last Friday in June: Further Mysteries

    Summer after summer has ended,
    balm after violence;
    it does me no good
    to be good to me now;
    violence has changed me.

    Daybreak. The low hills shine
    ochre and fire, even the hills shine.
    I know what I see; sun that could be
    the August sun, returning
    everything that was taken away —

    You hear this voice? This is my mind’s voice;
    you can’t touch my body now.
    It has changed once, it has hardened,
    don’t ask it to respond again.

* * * *

Stumbling outside after Gracie, making coffee. It’s a cool morning.

Yesterday I hung up the sign: JUST ANOTHER DAY IN PARADISE. Now it’s the first thing I see when I enter the garden.

A few weeks ago I mailed a card to an old college friend, whose e-mail I see because we are part of an e-mail distribution list; our batch has its own website, even. But from her there is only silence.

Yesterday I sent pictures of son to an aunt who lives in Carmel, who I haven’t seen in perhaps 15 years. As if that weren’t enough, I even e-mailed a former classmate who recently moved to Singapore. From both of these people, also silence.

The only one who responds is a former high school classmate who lives in Houston, L. And she is the busiest of all of us, because she has her own medical practice, and a six-year-old daughter besides.

The above poem I took from Louise Gluck’s savage book, Averno.

Averno: Ancient name Avernus. A small crater lake, ten miles west of Naples, Italy; regarded by the ancient Romans as the entrance to the underworld.

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