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by Ruth Stone

Now music irritates me.
I want nothing but sight.
I have never liked the dark,
except those summer evenings
sleeping on the front porch
when the phlox were in bloom.
The heavy sweetness, the air
spilling the fragrance across my body
in soft sighs.
And on the other side of the screen
the fireflies pulsing
green and yellow.
It’s this or the dark–the endless dark–
where I seem to move like a rogue planet among the
lamps
whose bulbs don’t burn for me.
Or the windows,
that look out on splattered lights and shadows
of once familiar, ordinary things.

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