The Song

The Song
By Naomi Shihab Nye

From somewhere
a calm musical note arrives.
You balance it on your tongue,
a single ripe grape,
till your whole body glistens.
In the space between breaths
you apply it to any wound
and the wound heals.

Soon the nights will lengthen,
you will lean into the year
humming like a saw.
You will fill the lamps with kerosene,
knowing somewhere a line breaks,
a city goes black,
people dig for candles in the bottom drawer.
You will be ready. You will use the song like a match.
It will fill your rooms
opening rooms of its own
so you sing, I did not know
my house was this large.

(from one of my all time favorite books. I’d take it with me on a dessert Island. Words Under the Words: Selected Poems. When I heard her give a reading a few years ago in Santa Barbara, it was life-changing.)

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Published in: on March 12, 2009 at 5:40 pm  Leave a Comment  
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