Wednesday, April 1, 2009

For what is moon, that it haunts us?

Half Moon, Small Cloud

by John Updike

Caught out in daylight, a rabbit’s

transparent pallor, the moon

is paired with a cloud of equal weight:

the heavenly congruence startles.

For what is the moon, that it haunts us,

this impudent companion immigrated

from the system’s less fortunate margins,

the realm of dust collected in orbs?

We grow up as children with it, a nursemaid

of a bonneted sort, round-faced and kind,

not burning too close like parents, or too far

to spare even a glance, like movie stars.

No star but in the zodiac of stars,

a stranger there, too big, it begs for love

(the man in it) and yet is diaphanous,

its thereness as mysterious as ours.

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