Places I have rested
God saw everything that he made, and indeed, it was very good. . . .
And God rested on the seventh day. Genesis 1:31
I can rest any place, dear friend,
although I have my preferences, lairs
much visited. I rest in Seamus Heaney,
bog lover, prodigal who remembers home,
chaste as the pope in a pub, language
lush crowned king. In that miser
Emily Dickinson, who counts the night’s
small coins to see no word is overspent,
each berry pinched until it bleeds.
In Robert Hass soliloquizing on
swans, cats and blackberries,
caressing vowels for the long embrace.
In Die Meistersinger—six hours
of Germanic glory—a lot of culture
in sausage, beer, bony knees,
lederhosen and busty maids.
In Joe Turner, who invented light,
splashed it across the channel ships.
—I never knew the sun could breathe.
But I rest best in wild canaries
outside my monastery window, tiny
fallen suns, frantic out of orbit, flashing
a wilder yellow in search of their gods.