In Memory of Erich Wolfgang Korngold
This is the view then,
Of a city thought most beautiful.
To the north and south, the east, the west,
Hillsides are terraced
As if they were ziggurats.
They point to a violet, cloud-stippled sky.
Beneath the cypress tree where I pause,
I notice a memorial plaque:
“This is the city which she loved.”
I do not sit and rest.
I stand with my knapsack,
The center of compass.
Poised on high,
I am the keeper of a sadness from the deep.
This sadness never sleeps.
The first faint stars,
A crescent moon,
Each is an inscrutable rune.
There is no remedy in heaven.
Questing, I leave here unenlightened,
As I descend the moss-stained stair,
From deep within the heart,
Hurt continues its drum roll,
Step by step to the landing.
There, the closer, more vivid view
Takes my breath.
I continue the descent,
For I live elsewhere.
Do not ask me where.
December 31 2008/January 1, 2009