Circe (_honeyspider) wrote in __aeaea,
Circe
_honeyspider
__aeaea

Elegy for Alice - Catherine Tufariello

I always assumed you were somewhere in the world,
And that someday we’d find each other again
And tell our adventures, like happy heroes
Reunited after years of wandering.

Hard to believe it’s been a dozen years
Since we slogged together through the Iliad,
Longer than the whole of the Trojan War,
Or the wanderings of Odysseus afterward.

When your mother told me you were dead,
All I could think about was our favorite verb,
μέλλω, our rueful shorthand for regret,
To be about to do, but leave undone.

"I meant," you’d say, "to study Greek last night,"
And I’d reply, "I too, O Agathon,
Intended to accomplish many things
Before the light of rosy-fingered dawn."

And now it’s seven years that you’ve been gone.
While I was living my ordinary life,
And carelessly, fondly imagining you in yours,
(Losing, in one of my many moves, the funny,

Wonderful letters you wrote me from Mexico),
I never dreamed that you would not grow old,
That time had stopped for you as suddenly
As for the daughters of weeping Hekabe

In burning Troy—the unremembered ones
You summoned from the ashes in the fall
Of 1983, when you were asked
To translate the catalogue of Priam’s sons.

Hard to believe that you will not return
And tell your adventures in the other world,
No matter how tenderly I brush the dead
Leaves from your sleeping face, and call your name.
Tags: catherine tufariello
Subscribe

  • To Failure - Phillip Larkin

    You do not come dramatically, with dragons That rear up with my life between their paws And dash me butchered down beside the wagons, The horses…

  • For What Binds Us - Jane Hirschfield

    There are names for what binds us: strong forces, weak forces. Look around, you can see them: the skin that forms in a half-empty cup, nails rusting…

  • Alone - Jack Gilbert

    I never thought Michiko would come back after she died. But if she did, I knew it would be as a lady in a long white dress. It is strange that she…

  • Post a new comment

    Error

    default userpic
    When you submit the form an invisible reCAPTCHA check will be performed.
    You must follow the Privacy Policy and Google Terms of use.
  • 0 comments