Has extension, density; can be felt:
the fall of scarf across your chilled shoulders;
the unforgiving floor on which you knelt
while weeping; dear body of love that molders
in the mute grave, despite your desperate tears.
The stars burn on like lost love, which smolders
in the heart's hearth for a while, but even stars
go out; the cosmos grows older and colder,
for substance changes form and in the process
reveals that it was never anything more
than hope and memory, the defeating farthest
distance being that which is at the core
of everything, the brute, unfathomable reaches
of space that matter, brave as soldiers, breaches.
By Kelly Cherry
Recipient of the 2012 Carole Weinstein Poetry Prize
Reprinted by permission of Louisiana State University Press
from The Retreats of Thought by Kelly Cherry.
Copyright © 2009 by Kelly Cherry.