Saturday, July 23, 2005

If I Could Stir

Our mini-heatwave and the one in NYC which has been on the news recently reminded me of this poem by HD. There seems to be more than one version of it but this is the one I know.


The Garden

I

You are clear
O rose, cut in rock,
hard as the descent of hail.

I could scrape the colour
from the petal,
like spilt dye from a rock.

If I could break you
I could break a tree.

If I could stir
I could break a tree,
I could break you.

II

O wind,
rend open the heat,
cut apart the heat,
rend it sideways.

Fruit cannot drop
through this thick air:
fruit cannot fall into heat
that presses up and blunts
the points of pears
and rounds the grapes.

Cut the heat,
plough through it,
turning it on either side
of your path.

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