A Girl in a Library
by Randall Jarrell
. . . The soul has no assignments, neither cooks
Nor referees: it wastes its time.
It wastes its time.
Here in this enclave there are centuries
For you to waste: the short and narrow stream
Of life meanders into a thousand valleys
Of all that was, or might have been, or is to be.
The books, just leafed through, whisper endlessly. . .
Yet it is hard. One sees in your blurred eyes
The "uneasy half-soul" Kipling saw in dogs'.
One sees it, in the glass, in one's own eyes.
In rooms alone, in galleries, in libraries,
In tears, in searchings of the heart, in staggering joys
We memorize once more our old creation,
Humanity: with what yawns the unwilling
Flesh puts on its spirit, O my sister!
. . .
Tuesday, May 13, 2014
The books, just leafed through, whisper endlessly . . .
From A Girl in a Library in The Seven-League Crutches by Randall Jarrell