Evening circles sunlight from the sky,
mirrors my window, one way. Outside
I must be museumed, diorama’d, aglow.
I turn to see who’s watching, find
the one man I’d forgotten to expect,
and behind him, through him,
blurred into his face and eyes, a wall
of books I read once, shelved, walk by
occasionally, fingering their spines.
My wife steps from the shower, dries
and wanders by. I comment on the blinds.
Who cares? she sighs. And suddenly I see
what I’ve been doing this whole time.
A Jack Gilbert Poem
Gianna is like Linda is like
Michiko. They are dead, or will be,
and what’s the difference, really?
But there is a pleasure in them,
and a pleasure inside that pleasure.
And a pleasure inside the memory
of those pleasures. It is like the old
Greek woman carrying firewood
up the hill outside my window
who knows, despite it all,
that spring is coming.
It is also like Pittsburgh.
Rob Taylor is the author of the poetry collection The Other Side of Ourselves (Cormorant Books, 2011). He lives with his wife, Marta, in Vancouver, where he is the Poetry Editor at PRISM international and a coordinator of the Dead Poets Reading Series.