Oh, yes, I knew. How could I not? Who better
to detect the small motions of intimacy, the gaiety?
I wasn't born yesterday. And across
the long green surge of water, the treachery
of cold pilings gulping, the uncertain sky –
I discover only what was always there: it was only
ever love. So I was right, after all.
And if it twinges, what of that? I never expected
a life free of twinges. I never expected a life at all.
I recover the hammer from the muddy ground,
recover the heft and sway of it. No notion
of what to build. That comes later.
I would take back only one thing. I said
I would never be happy, and that's true enough,
but I said it in bitterness, as if it were your fault.
I wonder if I can say, now, that I'm sorry?
I have more wilderness to wander in,
but that is not your fault; it never was.
But this happiness is one piece
I can hammer into place. This joy
need no longer be denied or idolized.
It's paid for, done, sealed, and still.
And the warm beating in my hand
of some strange fruit takes life again,
fledges in one flowering moment
and wheels toward a country still unknown.