Meditation on a Line by Sylvia Plath
after Reading The Birthday Letters
It drags the sea after it like a dark crime,
hoping to undermine the prosecutor's case
but not really worrying about the outcome.
It springs from the magic of twisted memories
the way a child remembers time in the womb
before the world burst in upon her ears
like a stageful of Japanese drummers.
It is only the language of love lingering
long after death silenced it,
hanging on to birthdays with words to awaken
days they walked together, sang sentimental songs
in the rain, after dark, in the woods.
So here it is again, that American girl, that English guy,
both lives coming back into focus,
dragged from the sea like a dark crime,
like a long drowned corpse you never expected to see again,
brought once again before our peanut munching faces.
27th March 1998
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