This is a love poem in which the poet's imagination flies far from his own experience.
Today, from a distance, I saw you
walking away, and without a sound
the glittering face of a glacier
slid into the sea. An ancient oak
fell in the Cumberlands, holding only
a handful of leaves, and an old woman
scattering corn to her chickens looked up
for an instant. At the other side
of the galaxy, a star thirty-five times
the size of our own sun exploded
and vanished, leaving a small green spot
on the astronomer's retina
as he stood on the great open dome
of my heart with no one to tell.
from Solo: A Journal of Poetry, Premiere Issue, Spring 1996
Copyright 1996 by Ted Kooser.
All rights reserved.
Reproduced with permission (click for permissions information).