Little Elegy

Little Elegy

But now that I am used to pain,
Its knuckles in my mouth the same
Today as yesterday, the cause
As clear-obscure as who's to blame,

A fascination with the flaws
Sets in - the plundered heart, the pause
Between those earnest, oversold
Liberties that took like laws.

What should have been I never told,
Afraid of outbursts you'd withhold.
Why are desires something to share?
I'm shivering, though it isn't cold.

Beneath your window, I stand and stare.
The planets turn. The trees are bare.
I'll toss a pebble at the pane,
But softly, knowing you are not there.

from Hazmat (Knopf, 2002), copyright © J. D. McClatchy 2002, used by permission of the author and the publisher.

Sponsor this poem

Would you like to sponsor this poem? Find out how here.


Buy album £0.00

1The Ledger


3The Rented House


5The Window

6My Mammogram

7Proust in Bed

8Tea with the Local Saint

9What They Left Behind

10Three Dreams about Elizabeth Bishop

11Late Night Ode



14The Agave

15Late Afternoon, Rome

16The Bookcase

17Hotel Bar

18Little Elegy

19A View of the Sea