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Lifelong

     —for the marriage of Charles and Lucina, Candelaria Day,

       Feb. 2, 1995. Terminally ill, Charles died Dec. 31, 1996.

So long as you both shall lift

   An echo in night’s tunnel, lift

   A child from numbing pavements, lift

   A hand to hold back, to set loose, to enfold;

So long as you both shall leave

   Proud pursuits go their own gait, leave

   The trampling and bright trophies, leave

   Your tidemark on the mind’s strand;

So long as you both shall laugh

   At sworn lies and their catch tunes, laugh

   At all contrived, all forced growths, laugh

   From the peaks of occult, calm passion;

So long as you both shall leaf

   Through sanctimonious parchments, leaf

   Gold on a new daybook’s edges, leaf

   Out, then blossom the nerves’ branchings;

So long as you both shall listen

   To the song latched in the ribs’ cage, listen

   To breath, soft, in the next room, listen

   To surfsound down the blood’s ways;

So long as you both shall love,

   So long last; none lasts longer.

from Not For Specialists: New and Selected PoemsFind it in the library

Copyright © BOA Editions, Ltd 2006
Used with the permission of The Permissions Company, Inc.
on behalf of BOA Editions LTD.

Published in Poems W.D. Snodgrass

This program is supported in part by a grant from the Idaho Humanities Council, a State-based program of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this (publication, website, exhibit, etc.) do not necessarily represent those of the Idaho Humanities Council or the National Endowment for the Humanities.

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