You, Therefore

By Reginald Shepherd 1963–2008 Reginald Shepherd

For Robert Philen

You are like me, you will die too, but not today:   
you, incommensurate, therefore the hours shine:   
if I say to you “To you I say,” you have not been   
set to music, or broadcast live on the ghost   
radio, may never be an oil painting or
Old Master’s charcoal sketch: you are
a concordance of person, number, voice,
and place, strawberries spread through your name   
as if it were budding shrubs, how you remind me   
of some spring, the waters as cool and clear
(late rain clings to your leaves, shaken by light wind),   
which is where you occur in grassy moonlight:   
and you are a lily, an aster, white trillium
or viburnum, by all rights mine, white star   
in the meadow sky, the snow still arriving
from its earthwards journeys, here where there is   
no snow (I dreamed the snow was you,
when there was snow), you are my right,
have come to be my night (your body takes on   
the dimensions of sleep, the shape of sleep   
becomes you): and you fall from the sky
with several flowers, words spill from your mouth
in waves, your lips taste like the sea, salt-sweet (trees   
and seas have flown away, I call it
loving you): home is nowhere, therefore you,   
a kind of dwell and welcome, song after all,   
and free of any eden we can name

Reprinted from Fata Morgana by Reginald Shepherd, published by the University of Pittsburgh Press. Copyright © 2007 by Reginald Shepherd.

Source: Fata Morgana (2007)

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Poet Reginald Shepherd 1963–2008

Subjects Love, Relationships, Romantic Love

Holidays Valentine's Day

 Reginald  Shepherd

Biography

Poet and editor Reginald Shepherd was born in New York City in 1963 and grew up in the Bronx. He earned a BA from Bennington College and studied at Brown University and the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. His first collection, Some Are Drowning (1994), won the Associated Writing Program’s Award in Poetry; his fourth, Otherhood (2003), was a finalist for the Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize; and his last book, Fata Morgana (2007), won a . . .

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SUBJECT Love, Relationships, Romantic Love

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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