Wednesday, April 11, 2012

The Wind Chimes

Wind chimes define me in some way. Maybe because the wind is my favorite element. I never miss a single movement in the leaves, however subtle, hey, I see you. When I read this poem, my first thought was oh this is what my husband will have to go through if I die and he has to clear up the house of all my books and plants and take down the wind chimes in every single balcony, the chimes that have been a source of such joy that I always felt I was overstaying....

The Wind Chimes

Two wind chimes,
one brass and prone to anger,
one with the throat of an angel,
swing from my porch eave,
sing with the storm.

Last year I lived five months
under that shrill choir,
boxing your house, crowding books
into crates, from some pages
your own voice crying.

Some days the chimes raged.
Some days they hung still.
They fretted when I dug up
the lily I gave you in April,
blooming, strangely, in fall.

Together, they scolded me
when I counted pennies you left
in each can, cup, and drawer,
when I rechecked the closets
for remnants of you.

The last day, the house empty,
resonant with space, the two chimes
had nothing to toll for.
I walked out, took them down,
carried our mute spirits home.

Shirley Buettner

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