On the Year's End: Considering the Sun in Absence
The sun has risen and fallen again, and elsewhere
must be rising on this last day of the year,
auspicious with eights and endings which
must be beginnings as the narrative will write
itself with or without adjustments and sidetracks
and lies. The year begins in hope, as it must, and the old
battered: a few photographs in frames, a number of lines
in neat order, piles of papers to file, stacks to purge and re-purge.
Sons taller, homes emptied, tidied and filled again. This
is how the story goes with false starts, with remarkable moments
once sworn to remembrance: but was it a sunrise or sunset?
Or, the way the half moon caught in the net of limbs, the prairie
covered in morning haze, smoke? Or, the owl posturing
as death reborn? There was a hill climbed, and the smell of paint
on a March afternoon, and many spiders removed stiff-legged
from webs, the stove’s redhead glowering and water rushing
into sinks and pans and saucers. Then whiskers,
on a son’s cheek, as he bends now to bid goodnight. And thus,
the sun rises and falls and the year begins anew.