Here I am trying to give in to the rain, to the rhythm, as regular as the breathing of a sleeping child, of the falling rain, falling, not into sleep, falling instead into the sleep chamber of the Sacred Dead, the chamber which awaits—bed made, the cover turned down like my place in a book—for me, the chamber into which people have fallen, fallen like apples, undiscovered in grass, or fallen like apples in wind, green, or, even as blossoms, the beauty of all that will be, for others, fallen, fallen to become the impulse toward beauty, appetites, regeneration—the rain, to which I cannot give in, giving voice to the inexhaustible surge of all which exhausts me and will not let me sleep,

awareness of a friend not to come down his steps, like the channeling of rain off his roof, my friend tomorrow not to come down his steps, the other side of this wall I face, not to pick up his headlines as if they were as inevitable as the width of our street, not to read of this new war’s similarity to the one we submitted to call “ours,” and not to share concern for our children’s children’s further

wars, my own steps waiting, for my own trudge toward being minimally in touch with more than I can say or think—grudgingly content to hold back—like a colt resisting enslavement or even an old horse flogged to a too hard task—and submit to someone’s evasions, understandably innocent inadequacies or, even, mendacities—someone’s willingness to risk telling a lie.

So here I am again, my wife, as comforting and unknown as an island, distant but undeniably there, confirming my boat my naked heel caulks and maybe will till I get ashore—my wife beyond rain surging into waves—my wife interrupting and resuming her breathing suggesting all any living human can, our, and our children’s children’s harmony with the rain.