If I could grasp the nature of the loss,
then I might plan a journey and a search.
My emissary dreams fly back, across
a length of years and lands, and lightly perch
There were the sharp black peaks upon white walls,
And plunging valleys, groanings on the floor,
Exciting lengths of tape, long-distance calls,
Dreams, fears, despair and change. That was BEFORE.
Once this fine-ground dust was a dancing maiden
Bearing fruits carved out of Pentelic marble.
Dressed in pleated robe white as a mountain summit,
Pure for the goddess.
Can we believe, against all disbelief,
against the evidence of all our senses,
that underneath our wearinss and grief,
our shattered peace and trembling defenses,
Someplace along the time-worn way
the gifts I bought were lost;
stolen perhaps, or used to pay
a beer or lodging cost,