End of the affair

End of the affair

How many dawns
           did we wake to sunshine
and to the chill fresh air
           down by the river
In my thoughts
           you are everywhere
you are your very likeness
           but there is within you
a hidden voice that is distracted
           that reaches for words
but cannot find them
           Love you say
flies on faded wings
           it has no meaning
once you surrender
           to your mirrored fate
and so your heart tears
           into thin strips
the linen of your soul
           rent to tatters

The bridge was a monument
           to tenderness
to boldness
           a place to defend
with your life
           should you so desire
but in darkness you prefer
           to fritter away your tears
and to make your mouth
           absent from mine

And so silence
           that arises from the calm
slop of sleep
           and caprice has done
your destiny to death
           in dishonoured time

So be it
           loveless there is no joy
indecisive
           you serve no one
not even yourself
           and all that you have
to give and to share
           goes unspent

John Lyons

 

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110 Columbia Heights

110 Columbia Heights

And I have been able
         to give rein to freedom and life
which was acknowledged
         in the ecstasy
of walking hand in hand
         across the most beautiful bridge
in the world
         the cables enclosing us
and pulling us upward
         in such a dance
as I have never walked
         and never can walk
with another—
         and you will see
from my address
         that I am living
in the shadow
         of that bridge

It’s so quiet here
         a moment of communion
where the edge of the bridge
         leaps over the edge of the street
In the evening darkness
         of its shadow I began
the last verse of that poem

[Hart Crane to Waldo Frank
Brooklyn, NY, 21 April 1924]