The Little Review (littlereview) wrote,
The Little Review

Poem for Wednesday

To the Present Tense
By W.S. Merwin

By the time you are
by the time you come to be
by the time you read this
by the time you are written
by the time you forget
by the time you are water through fingers
by the time you are taken for granted
by the time it hurts
by the time it goes on hurting
by the time there are no words for you
by the time you remember
but without the names
by the time you are in the papers
and on the telephone
passing unnoticed there too

who is it
to whom you come
before whose very eyes
you are disappearing
without making yourself known


One more by Merwin from the new book, because it was haunting me. I am struck by how despite the similarities in the titles, each of the poems I've seen from the new collection is so different in style and tone.

I have been running around all day -- took younger son to school as hubby was doing a conference call from home with the people in Bangalore from 7-8:30 a.m., then drove hubby to work because the van was being serviced, stopped at Best Buy to pick up a movie (March of the Penguins) that the kids had lobbied for but it turns out is not out till next week...came back home, took a walk, write three Trek articles, got older son from the early bus stop so the kids had a few minutes to gather their books and chill before Hebrew school, took them to Hebrew school, got gas, picked hubby up from work, drove with him to the car dealer to pick up the van, drove home, got the kids from Hebrew school, had dinner, worked on holiday cards a bit, watched Threshold and am now feeling totally zoned out. Not in a bad way though...remember when I was asking about bite guards? I must say that I heartily, heartily recommend them, as I have, knock wood, not had a migraine since I got mine. (I will probably get one on Thanksgiving between the time of the month and my sister and father being in the same room, now that I said that!)

I remain lukewarm on Threshold, liking the ideas better than the execution most weeks despite a very good cast...I enjoy watching them enough that it makes up for the dialogue and alien victim of the week and things that seem ripped off directly from X-Files. This week I was amused too that most of the episode was set in the DC area and my hometown was mentioned by name as the home of one of the compromised women, so whee, maybe I picked up alien signal while shopping in my local grocery, wait, this woman was way too wealthy to do her own shopping, but maybe we passed somewhere somehow and soon I am going to dream of glass forests and a shirtless Agent Cavennaugh which would not be such a bad thing.

EW has made me very happy -- this week's issue is promoting the film of Rent with a free DVD that has, in addition to Rent cast interviews, a whole slew of clips and interviews from current Broadway shows including The Light in the Piazza, Spamalot, Wicked and an interview about the Sweeney Todd revival with my beloved original Evita, Patti LuPone. (Is this on the newsstand or just for subscribers? I get EW because a few times a year they do an issue that I absolutely must have, and it's as cheap to subscribe for those occasions as it is to buy those issues!)

Have sister and her family to visit tomorrow and in-laws coming as well for Thanksgiving so expect to have limited online time. Have read exactly four people on my friends list in the past three days and it will probably stay that way, was already unfriended by one longtime friend in a huff over neglect, but there is just nothing I can do about this and I can't pretend I am going to try to read the whole flist from now on, let's be real, if I get to -100 on my default list I feel good. So I'm sorry, and I hate being out of touch, but some days I have very little time to myself and if I must choose between reading and writing, I need to write for my sanity.

The waterfall at Scott's Run from above, up the rocky cliff above the Potomac River...

...and from below, on the bank of the Potomac where the rapids end.

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