The Little Review (littlereview) wrote,
The Little Review
littlereview

Poem for Thursday and Stone Barn


Unknown Bird
By W.S. Merwin

Out of the dry days
through the dusty leaves
far across the valley
those few notes never
heard here before

one fluted phrase
floating over its
wandering secret
all at once wells up
somewhere else

and is gone before it
goes on fallen into
its own echo leaving
a hollow through the air
that is dry as before

where is it from
hardly anyone
seems to have noticed it
so far but who now
would have been listening

it is not native here
that may be the one
thing we are sure of
it came from somewhere
else perhaps alone

so keeps on calling for
no one who is here
hoping to be heard
by another of its own
unlikely origin

trying once more the same few
notes that began the song
of an oriole last heard
years ago in another
existence there

it goes again tell
no one it is here
foreign as we are
who are filling the days
with a sound of our own

--------

I'm behind on things because little went according to schedule on Wednesday -- not the laundry, not my Target delivery which as has happened before arrived with half the things in the huge box crushed by others, not my usual lunchtime call with my high school friends because one person couldn't come and the other two were tied up long after noon, not my walk which was interrupted by a thunderstorm. Food, at least, was good: Paul made Belgian food for dinner since it's Belgium's national holiday, and our neighbor brought us Moroccan bread that we ate with Moroccan honey.

And I discovered that the making-of-Loki episode of Assembled had arrived on Disney+, which we watched long distance with Cheryl, and that was a thing of total beauty. Tom Hiddleston narrates it as if he's actually a Loki -- at one point during a rehearsal he calls Frigga his mum -- and there's behind-the-scenes footage of Alligator Loki, and Owen Wilson discussing how, after quoting Shakespeare, Tom was polite enough to ask whether he too had ever played Hamlet, something Ben Stiller never thought to ask him. Here are the stone barn-museum and horses at Woodlawn Manor Park:

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