Morning

By Billy Collins b. 1941 Billy Collins
Why do we bother with the rest of the day,
the swale of the afternoon,
the sudden dip into evening,

then night with his notorious perfumes,
his many-pointed stars?

This is the best—
throwing off the light covers,
feet on the cold floor,
and buzzing around the house on espresso—

maybe a splash of water on the face,
a palmful of vitamins—
but mostly buzzing around the house on espresso,

dictionary and atlas open on the rug,
the typewriter waiting for the key of the head,
a cello on the radio,

and, if necessary, the windows—
trees fifty, a hundred years old
out there,
heavy clouds on the way
and the lawn steaming like a horse
in the early morning.

Billy Collins, “Morning” from Picnic, Lightning. Copyright © 1998 by Billy Collins. All rights are controlled by the University of Pittsburgh Press. Reprinted with the permission of the University of Pittsburgh Press, www.pitt.edu/~press/.

Source: Poetry (June 1996).

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Poet Billy Collins b. 1941

POET’S REGION U.S., Mid-Atlantic

Subjects Home Life, Relationships, Eating & Drinking, Activities

Poetic Terms Free Verse, Ode