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Two Promises (or, To a Woman Suffering from Anxiety)

A smooth pebble rolls around
Lands and falls softly on a bed of supporting sand,
Each grain with equal weight lending a hand;
But if stone wishes and wills itself to travel farther (with fervour)
To be licked and rolled in the white horse lather:
Token grains jostle; rain down deeper and percolate their support
without sound.

Light befalls the sunflower by her namesake
On dew-drop petals (by cloud look sullen and wan)
To these: she can do little harm, the sun.
Yet if, on some day in shine these petals should crinkle in offense
Then sunlight will by degrees fade, and moonlight arrive whence
An ageing yet timeless caretaker pulls over her projection
in their sunlit field,
using the shadow of a lunar rake.

Tempest: friendless oaks countenance angry faces;
Wave branches wildly at wind-sail leaves;
They warn those off, those personal, ethereal thieves—
And if their own should induce a strange cerebral punishment
Let else them provide unrelenting woodland nourishment
By intending to fall, and reliably decay at the trees’
unembellished bases.

A sturdy tin roof with just a single, rain-drop load
Projects within an isolated, water-averse trinket
(Whereupon drips lead to a porcelain nose wrinkled).
Although if that figurine desires induction of a face taut
That tin roof for which dryness was so wrought
Will in time crack under lifetime’s storm; slowly corrode.

To make staid promises—to a nuanced mind—of two:
To support, and to never subtract from her well-being—of you
But, you say “What if those promises are in direct conflict seeing?”
Oh, you mean to be blind, yet still see?
Sleepless; capable of rêverie?
And if by being close should induce hurt; naturally as a lamb born in May?

Oh, but it is possible—to nominally fade away, yet stay.

Photograph: Bristol Harbourside, UK, near the SS Great Britain

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