Image by Lilian Kemp

In the Evening

In the Evening

Three hours chain-smoking words
and you move on. We stand in the porch,
two archaic figures: a woman and a man.

The old masters, the old sources,
haven't a clue what we're about,
shivering here in the half-dark sixties.

Our minds hover in a famous impasse
and cling together. Your hand
grips mine like a railing on an icy night.

The wall of the house is bleeding. Firethorn!
The moon, cracked every which-way.
pushes steadily on.

1966


from Leaflets (W. W. Norton & Company, 1969), copyright © Adrienne Rich 1969, used by permission of the author