Eve Considers the Possibility of Pardon

By John Engels 1931–2007 John Engels
In one dream I am made watchful.
In this dream the name we never clearly have heard   
is spoken, which name, if we knew

and could speak it, would call back to us   
those whom in time we will have come to love   
and who will die; would bring them back to us

like us abandoned again
to his terrible consequence,   
the silence between us

forever affirmed. And in whatever   
might constitute the pardon   
would come down in a fragile rain

the whole matter of all
we will ever love, the whole
fiery blade of space, ten billions of suns

suddenly blossoming small and cool   
as snowdrops over the opening graves,   
the world shimmering with the blue

delicate membrane of the fallen sky,
while above us the forsaken voice calls out   
come back come back

as if calling the name
each of us had long forgotten
until that very instant not remembered

as proper to our hearts.

John Engels, “Eve Considers the Possibility of Pardon” from House and Garden. Copyright © 2001. Used with the permission of the author and Notre Dame University Press.

Source: Weather-Fear: New and Selected Poems 1958-1982 (1983)

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Poet John Engels 1931–2007

POET’S REGION U.S., New England

Subjects Religion, Relationships, Love, God & the Divine, Realistic & Complicated

Poetic Terms Free Verse, Persona

 John  Engels

Biography

John Engels grew up in South Bend, Indiana. He earned an AB in English from the University of Notre Dame, served in the US Navy for three years, attended University College, Dublin, and received an MFA from the University of Iowa in 1957. Engels published over 10 collections of poetry, among them The Homer Mitchell Place (1968), Weather-Fear: New and Selected Poems 1958–1982 (1983), Walking to Cootehill: New and Selected Poems, . . .

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Religion, Relationships, Love, God & the Divine, Realistic & Complicated

POET’S REGION U.S., New England

Poetic Terms Free Verse, Persona

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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