Because The New York Times didn’t know about my poem:
The moon hangs motionless,
not sliding or ascending,
patient in place between faces,
shiny as change left on the bar.
We’re lost in stop action
a tick past last call, the second
bottoms up this over-served
We could sleep through the do over,
do nothing and lose the given minutes.
Instead, turned out of juke joints
in a hung-over hour, we watch the sky
where unchanging stars
are burnished by an endless race
of small clouds washed in moonlight.
We make it home in no time.
Even this long night
the world does not repeat itself
but plays in variation
like Elgar’s themes. Chords
progress, tempos change,
major turns minor, diminishes.
Night’s second verse
sounds the first, improvises
on the same old song.
Dawn’s pale ascent
comes coda on a blue note.
What happens adds a beat,
struck and struck and struck again, a stone
up hilltop rolls down and is pushed back.
This is a second chance to sing refrains
Night is not darker or a symbol
of darkness but a dark, eternal symbol.
In these late moments, awake,
asleep, dreams sharp as moonlight
cast in blackness come chorus,
repeat like an added hour.