On Being Poets

Plath and Hughes
live on in us - her
maze and darknesses, the sour
taste of her life on her tongue - his
animalism, the abrupt sharpnesses
of flesh, the twisted neck
of a hare, the cold trigger
finger.   They had a house -
like us - our small space holds
no children but words - and
my moon and branches - and
his memory of coast and shore
suffice us here.    I have just read
his 'The Impossibility of Pure Water'
and realise we both drink
at a fount just
outside our reach - but the
flashing fall of the water
in moonlight or sunlight
glinting in silver or redgold
as it cascades
over the stony
lip of its fall - pulls us in
to its mobile face, the fact of its
softnesses and its
rehydration on lips and skin.
Here we are parched
with living - and the angry
faces with their
stony silences, the reeling
of the past before our eyes -
like them we have our differences
but draw-in to one another's
heart and
hold each other's hand
as if we would begin.
They have gone
but we remain - and so
a legacy - ungiven, ungifted,
unknown, unseen, lives on
in us as we breathe
and write, and I hold
my dark space and him
his mobile mind -
and it suffices.
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