Indian Summer at Lands End

9 April 2010


The season stalls, unseasonably fair,
blue-fair, serene, a stack of golden discs,
each disc a day and the addition slow.
I wish you were here with me to walk the flats,
toward dusk especially when the tide is out
and the bay turns opal, filled with rolling fire
that washes on the mouldering wreck offshore,
our mussel-vineyard, strung with bearded grapes.
Last night I reached for you and shaped you there
lying beside me as we drifted past
the farthest seamarks and the watchdog bells,
and round Long Point throbbing its frosty light,
until we streamed into the open sea.
What did I know of voyaging till now?
Meanwhile I tend my flocks, small golden puffs
impertinent as wrens, with snipped-off tails,
who bounce down from the trees. High overhead,
on the trackless sky, skywriting V and yet
another V, the southbound Canada express
hoots of horizons and distances…

–Stanley Kunitz (from Passing Through, 1995)

Possibly my favorite poem of all time. What do you think?

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