The conundrum of time in all its aspects occupies Jane Hirshfield in her latest collection, Come, Thief.
I wanted to give you something —
no stone, clay, bracelet,
no edible leaf could pass through.
Even a molecule’s fragrance by then too large.
Giving had been taken, as you soon would be.
Still, I offered the puffs of air shaped to meaning.
They remained air.
I offered memory on memory,
but what is memory that dies with the fallible inks?
I offered apology, sorrow, longing. I offered anger.
How fine is the mesh of death. You can almost see through it.
I stood on one side of the present, you stood on the other.
Learn more about Jane Hirshfield’s Come, Thief.
Excerpt from COME, THIEF © 2011 by Jane Hirshfield. All rights reserved. Published in the United States by Alfred A. Knopf, a division of Random House, Inc., New York. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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