Monday, March 23, 2015

Denise Levertov / The needless

by Denise Levertov

He told me about
a poem he was writing.
For me.
He told me it asked,
'When I mean only to brush her gently
with soft feathers,

do the feathers
turn into needles?'
His telling me

was a cloud of
soft feathers, I closed
my eyes and sank in it.

Many weeks
I waited. At last,
'Did you, were you able

to finish that poem
you told me about,

'No', he said
looking away.
Needles paused

for an instant on my skin
before they drew blood.

"Poems 1968-1972"
New Directions Publishing Corporation, 1987

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