Spirit and Body

One morning beginning to notice
which thoughts pull the spirit out of the body, and which return it.
How quietly the abandoned body keens,
like a bonsai maple surrounded by her dropped leaves.
Rain or objects call the forgotten back.
The droplets’ placid girth and weight. The table’s lack of ambition.
How strange it is that longing, too, becomes a small green bud,
thickening the vacant branch-length in early March.

–Jane Hirshfield

I’m on a Hirshfield run, reading After as well as Nine Gates, her essays on poetry. This morning this poem just stayed on, lingering long.

3 Replies to “Spirit and Body”

  1. I’ll have to add the essays to my book list. I have read After a number of times. The poem here is wonderful.

    1. Oh! I hadn’t read this poem and it’s just breathtaking. Thank you.

  2. Thanks Maureen and Lindsay, both, for your thoughts. I’m very enamored with Hirschfield. I feel like I am just beginning to plumb her work.

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: