And then we know. . .
That if the dead by any chance returned
We would not know them, that the cherished few
With whom God chose to part us do not miss us. . .
—Anna Akhmatova

The last time I saw all night on the horizon
the red horse grazing
I was with you,
weary on the bed in Sweden but pulling

your gauzy breath in and out like this fisherman
who casts his net again and again
on the sea while I watched
the roses go on burning at three a.m.

unable to take my eyes from the darkness
that never came.
So I think you have gone some place wholly
without shadows and the bodies

that make shadows,
you are the sun’s eye and mitral valve,
a far-off star in an ocean of stars,
your lost blonde trailing galaxy hair.

Mother, when the fisherman folds
his net and I sleep na beregu morya
beside the Gulf of Finland,
cover me with light.

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