‘You enjoy a cigar and a clear view of Jersey.
The tide is going out across the shingle,
and nothing on earth can stop it.
The smooth stones you pick up and examine
under the moon’s light have been made blue
from the sea. Next morning when you pull them
from your trouser pocket, they are still blue.’
– Raymond Carver, extract from The Blue Stones
Now that lilacs are in bloom
She has a bowl of lilacs in her room
– T. S. Eliot, Portrait of a Lady
‘The moon is within me, and so is the sun.’
‘Out on the sea it is raining too. It beats on no one.’
– Anne Carson, On Rain
Lying in a Hammock at William Duffy’s Farm in Pine Island, Minnesota
– James Wright
Over my head, I see the bronze butterfly,
Asleep on the black trunk,
Blowing like a leaf in green shadow.
Down the ravine behind the empty house,
The cowbells follow one another
Into the distances of the afternoon.
To my right,
In a field of sunlight between two pines,
The droppings of last year’s horses
Blaze up into golden stones.
I lean back, as the evening darkens and comes on.
A chicken hawk floats over, looking for home.
I have wasted my life.