The Berkeley Wire: 04.30.12

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  • Oops

  • Bill Denham

    Seeing A Rose on Portland Street

    A final word


    These are my final words to you—

                well, I
    can’t say that for sure.

                I’m pretty
    sure they’re not

                but what if
    they were,

                what would
    I say?


    “Never be without a mirror!”

                You may
    find one anywhere.

    for example,

                you were to
    see an astonishing rose

                with the
    three outermost petals

                fanning out
    in irregular, unsymmetrical ways

                as near
    white shades creep up,

                here and
    there, in no discernible pattern,

                into the
    rich velvet pink of each petal,

                as if these
    slight breaths of white,

    and indistinct had traveled

                in some
    secret way up from the base

                through the
    intricate network of veins,

                visible in
    this three-petaled cradle

                just to
    make of it an astonishment—

    three-petaled cradle

                holding layer
    after loosening layer

                of slightly
    pink edged golden pedals,

                so soft in
    hue as to be neither gold nor yellow

                but some
    miraculous mixture of the two,

                so unique
    and so fleeting,

                as to leave
    you             near breathless,

                like one witnessing
    the birth of everything.


    Or suppose you happened to look

                into the
    eyes of another, close in.

                It could be
    the eyes of your beloved

                or those of
    a stranger

                whose path
    crossed yours

                by mere

                Or even, by
    imagination, then,

                we might
    find our mirror

                in the eyes
    of the Führer.

                Not a
    problem, finding a mirror.




                                                                BD 4/24/12