Tuesday, May 8, 2007

The Nut

Here is a poem about death. It owes too much to John Donne.

If inside that shell
A universe could fit,
And all of stuff, all stories, songs and stars,
All weight and store, all ways, signs, lightness, waste and wars,
Could therein dwell,
While we two sit
Outside, with only you and I
And breath, to wait and wonder why
We were not lost
Inside that nut-bound ever-widening sphere -
Even then, despite its host,
Eternity it could not boast.

But if instead I chose
To wait within those walls,
And near them could, tending ever more close,
Ever stay but near or, closing, all knowledge lose;
Then, though enclosed,
I’ld know no walls.
I’ld no outside perceive
And could with ease believe
That ball to hold
Inside all, and all inside.
Then, your palm feeling that form told,
You might my boundless all enfold.

Thus (knowing none to wait
Beyond) as our live set
Expands in time, our space of days to fill,
We sense each second’s sequence to a timeless null
Converge. Even late,
They’ve never met,
For to pass is to pass all sense
And to meet it is to pass, hence
Our mortal trap
Is all around enshelled in air:
We each within our lifetime’s gap
A tight eternity enwrap.