Love Calls Us to the Things of This World
The eyes open to a cry of pulleys,
And spirited from sleep, the astounded soul
Hangs for a moment bodiless and simple
As false dawn.
Outside the open window
The morning air is all awash with angels.
Some are in bed-sheets, some are in blouses,
Some are in smocks: but truly there they are.
Now they are rising together in calm swells
Of halcyon feeling, filling whatever they wear
With the deep joy of their impersonal breathing;
Now they are flying in place, conveying
The terrible speed of their omnipresence, moving
And staying like white water; and now of a sudden
They swoon down into so rapt a quiet
That nobody seems to be there.
The soul shrinks
From all that it is about to remember,
From the punctual rape of every blessed day,
"Oh, let there be nothing on earth but laundry,
Nothing but rosy hands in the rising steam
And clear dances done in the sight of heaven."
Yet, as the sun acknowledges
With a warm look the world's hunks and colors,
The soul descends once more in bitter love
To accept the waking body, saying now
In a changed voice as the man yawns and rises,
"Brung them down from their ruddy gallows;
Let there be clean linen for the backs of thieves;
Let lovers go fresh and sweet to be undone,
And the heaviest nuns walk in a pure floating
Of dark habits,
keeping their difficult balance."
- Richard Wilbur
Hey everybody! The poem of the week is coming in at 1:30 in the morning my time, because I am sick of doing homework and I am feeling a little down, so it's poem time! Doing this one has lifted my spirits considerably, I must say. Some things to think about with this poem: the diction is very reminiscent of laundry, especially throughout the first half of the poem; the presence of angels all around us, listening and unseen by the body (though worn by it); hope starting every morning; how love brings the soul into the body every morning....I happen to think that the moments waking up on a soft day are some of the most beautiful, comfortable ones I can think of. So hopefully tomorrow morning or even any morning will be like that in the near future - not cold light or cloud-light but buttery light. Okay - good night! Or good morning because that's when all of you sensible people will be getting this poem!