Infinite Sorrow

I have been to Rome many times,
though not for some years.

I went to see an old lady in Balduina,
overlooking St Peter’s.

I saw little of the city, however,
spending much time in the kitchen,
listening to her talk
as she prepared the evening meal.

How she could talk.

“Sonny,” she would say,
“in your life you have suffered greatly.
But I have suffered infinitely.”

She cooked the best veal
I have ever eaten.

Infinite sorrow can taste pretty good.

only don’t ask me

the unlocatable sorrows of the heart
cannot be mapped
but may be glimpsed through art –
in colours that in striking ways combine
in music or words that mysteriously
lilt or chime

in no sense do these explicitly impart
significance but make you start
feel elevated – touch – jar
the unlocatable sorrows of the heart

else ask the wind the fire the sea
onky don’t ask me

woodpile

a stack of logs
lying by the hearth

silver birch
elder
beech
larch

everything returns
into the earth

larch
beech
elder
silver birch

and the blackbird’s song
that lingers on
from the woodpile

and knows no hurt
like human hurts
by the woodpile