Image by Margaretta Mitchell

Poem introduction

This is a poem called 'Sonnet' that isn't a sonnet in the sense that it doesn't have the rhyme scheme of a sonnet but I thought it was in the territory of the sonnet at the beginning of the 21st century.

Sonnet

 

A man talking to his ex-wife on the phone.
He has loved her voice and listens with attention
to every modulation of its tone. Knowing
it intimately. Not knowing what he wants
from the sound of it, from the tendered civility.
He studies, out the window, the seed shapes
of the broken pods of ornamental trees.
The kind that grow in everyone's garden, that no one
but horticulturists can name. Four arched chambers
of pale green, tiny vegetal proscenium arches,
a pair of black tapering seeds bedded in each chamber.
A wish geometry, miniature, Indian or Persian,
lovers or gods in their apartments. Outside, white,
patient animals, and tangled vines, and rain.


from Sun Under Wood (HarperCollins, 1996), copyright © Robert Hass 1996, used by permission of HarperCollins Publishers.

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